Support Local Journalism. Join Riverfront Times Press Club.

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

Saint Louis Art Museum Scaling Back Amid Economic Downturn

Posted By on Wed, Apr 15, 2009 at 1:17 PM

FLICKR.COM/PHOTOS/FOTOBYDAVE
  • flickr.com/photos/fotobydave
A bill proposed by state Sen. Joan Bray requiring that people living outside St. Louis City and County pay admissions fees to visit certain regional attractions is coming none too soon for the Saint Louis Art Museum.

The Associated Press reports this week that the art museum is being forced to cut costs by $1.5 million thanks to the lousy economy. Museum Director Brent Benjamin tells the AP that the institution's endowment has declined 30 percent in six months. The museum has offered early retirement to 19 of its 179 full-time employees. It's also cut back significantly on printing material and eliminated all but essential travel.

The art museum is one of five organizations within the Zoo-Museum District that receive taxpayer support from St. Louis City and County. As such, none of the institutions except for the Botanical Garden can charge admissions. Bray's bill would change that, allowing the art museum -- and the others -- to charge non-residents an entrance fee.

Despite the economic hardships, the art museum says that it still plans to move forward on construction later this year of a major expansion.

Tags: , , ,

Support Local Journalism.
Join the Riverfront Times Press Club

Local journalism is information. Information is power. And we believe everyone deserves access to accurate independent coverage of their community and state. Our readers helped us continue this coverage in 2020, and we are so grateful for the support.

Help us keep this coverage going in 2021. Whether it's a one-time acknowledgement of this article or an ongoing membership pledge, your support goes to local-based reporting from our small but mighty team.

Join the Riverfront Times Club for as little as $5 a month.

Read the Digital Print Issue

June 9, 2021

View more issues

Newsletters

Never miss a beat

Sign Up Now

Subscribe now to get the latest news delivered right to your inbox.

Best Things to Do In St. Louis

© 2021 Riverfront Times

Website powered by Foundation