County Approves Another $10K Advance For Gatchell

Jim Gatchell Memorial Museum

Johnson County's Commissioners have approved another $10,000 “advance” to the Jim Gatchell Memorial Museum, after they approved a $20,000 advance to them in April.

Gatchell Museum Director John Gavin came before the commissioners at their regular meeting earlier this week to seek more funding from them to keep the museum's doors open until June, when they are expecting a substantial payment from the county from property tax collections.

Gavin explained the advance in April only went so far to meet their responsibilities.

According to Gavin and Commissioner Linda Greenough, the GMA, or Gatchell Museum Association, is aware of the funding problem and are looking into helping the museum by finding a solution within legal parameters and within their own by-laws. They were looking into the possibility of “giving” the museum the $35,000 they have already spent to reimburse them, and then are looking into setting up a reserve account or revolving fund to allow the museum to dip into those funds when needed and then pay them back to the GMA. These plans, coupled with a new bookkeeping program being implemented at the museum are how they are moving to correct their funding problem.

County Treasurer Carla Faircloth, when asked by the commissioners, said she was “uncomfortable” with the second $20,000 advance. She suggested waiting until the commissioners next meeting on May 17th to allow time for her to see how property tax collections were going, to give her an idea of what the museum should be expecting in revenue in their June payment from the county.

Gavin told the commissioners the museum would not be able to meet payroll on the 15th without the advance.

The commissioners voted to allow another advance to the Gatchell Museum in the amount of $10,000 to allow them to meet their payroll obligations this month.

Gavin said he was “confident “ that with the advance, help from the GMA, changes to their bookkeeping and increased admissions and sales through the busy summer and fall months would allow the museum to make it through to the end of the year in December.