Governor Rauner, IDNR reach agreement to reopen Illinois State Museum

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SPRINGFIELD - The Illinois Department of Natural Resources says an agreement has been reached that will allow the reopening of the Illinois State Museum.

IDNR Director Wayne Rosenthal says the department has worked with Governor Bruce Rauner to create a more sustainable model for operating the museum.  Among the cost-cutting measures estimated to save about $1 million each year include:

- Consolidating IDNR's human resources and accounting functions
- Developing a new management and organizational structure
- Closing two museum branches
- Charging an admission fee
- Increasing fundraising efforts

IDNR officials say the timeframe in which the museum would be reopened will depend on how quickly the General Assembly acts on the amendatory veto of SB 317.  Rosenthal adds that the museum could be reopened to the public "in a matter of weeks."

Additionally, Michael Wiant will become the interim Illinois State Museum Director while the Board searches for a permanent replacement.

For more information about the Illinois State Museum, click here.

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