Commissioners Approve 'Advance' For Gatchell Museum

Jim Gatchell Memorial Museum

The Johnson County Commissioners approved a $20,000 “advance” of funding for the Jim Gatchell Memorial Museum to cover their payroll and other operational expenses through the end of this month.

Gatchell Museum Director John Gavin made the request of the county commissioners at this week's meeting, saying they needed the funds to tide them over until they receive their next funding check from the county in June. He said he expected about $80,000 from the county for the museum's share of funding from property tax collections.
He originally requested a $40,000 advance.
Essentially, the request is for a loan from the county against funding the museum will get from property tax collections the county will receive in June.

Gavin explained that the income to the museum from the county is different every month and is not enough to cover expenses in some months. At this point this year the museum is below where they normally are financially, which is why he was requesting the $40,000 advance from the commissioners.

Gavin said the museum has been working on ways to make cuts to their budget for the coming year, including eliminating a position; cutting their advertising budget; putting a freeze on all but necessary purchases; canceling this year's Living History Day; and not putting a new exhibit in this year, among other cuts.

After discussing where to find funds and how to distribute them to the museum legally, the commissioners decided to take $20,000 from the general fund, through the museum's budget line, against the museum's share of property tax collections expected in June.
The county will be paid back from the museum's property tax funds in June.

Gavin and the commissioners were hopeful that there would be no need for him to come back before the commissioners in May for another advance, but there is a possibility he may have to do so.