Ohr museum & Biloxi may enter a new lease agreement

BILOXI, MS (WLOX) - A new funding agreement could soon be in place between the city of Biloxi and the Ohr-O'Keefe Museum of Art.

Biloxi owns the Ohr property. The Ohr's attorney Michael Cavanaugh said on Thursday, the board of trustees voted in support of some proposed changes to its lease with the city that are proposed by Council member Bill Stallworth.

Stallworth proposes having the city pay half of the museum's monthly electric bill up to $4,500. The city would also pay the insurance premiums. Stallworth said the museum was able to find a quote much cheaper what the city was able to get.

"It's going to be cheaper for the city in the long run," said Stallworth. "The Welcome Center and the African-American museum require that they stay operational. If the Ohr moves out, then the city is still required to keep it operating. So for instance, we'd be paying all of the light bill instead of half of a light bill.

Stallworth said if the agreement moves forward, the museum would continue private fundraising efforts to ease the burden on the city.

The proposal could go before the full council next week.

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