Biloxi to reduce seafood museum funding by 20%

BILOXI, MS (WLOX) - The city of Biloxi is not immune to the sagging economy and officials are having to make some changes to keep the city afloat.

Recently the city council decided to reduce the amount of money going to the Maritime and Seafood Industry Museum.  The city council announced that it will have to reduce donations to seafood museum by 20 percent this year.

Museum leaders say while it's less than ideal, they saw this coming.  "We understand that everybody has got to suck it up and pay their dues," seafood industry board member Richard Breslin told Biloxi council members. "We understand the reasons for the cuts in the budgets and we whole heartedly support the twenty percent cut across the board.

"Anybody with any common sense knows that Biloxi is the city that seafood built and we know that you know that and that you're doing everything you can to help us get back off the ground."

The budget for the seafood industry museum managed to stay off the chopping block last year, but the organization wasn't as lucky this time around.  According to Biloxi councilman Bill Stallworth, "The resolution that we had today reflects their management agreement to reflect the new numbers so that their cost is 20 percent less than what they had as is the same we've done for every other non profit organization.Last year it didn't happen this year they got caught up, like everybody else."

Though the cut is definitely a setback, seafood industry museum leaders are looking to the future with optimism.  Museum director Robin Krohn David says there are already plans in the works to supplement some of the lost donations.  "We're getting ready for a major fundraiser," Krohn David said. "Our $10,000 draw down is next weekend and next month is a celebrity golf tournament that we're sponsoring so we're looking to rebuild the museum with our different fundraising events and we hope to break ground by the end of the year."

The cuts will go into effect in October.  But that shouldn't damper the mood too much. The Maritime and Seafood Industry Museum is celebrating its 25 anniversary this year.

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