Former Mayor Asking For Ohr Support

Former Biloxi mayor Jerry O'Keefe is pushing for a groundswell of public support for a new art museum before he asks for funding from the city again. The Ohr-O'Keefe museum is named after Biloxi potter, George E. Ohr, and Annette O'Keefe, the deceased wife of Jerry O'Keefe. O'Keefe and his children have conveyed a family trust valued at one million dollar for the construction of the museum.

Companies owned by the family have donated 200-thousand dollars more. O'Keefe says he's unsure how much money will be requested from the city to continue the construction. O'Keefe said he will not ask the city to borrow the money through a bond issue. The Ohr-O'Keefe Museum of Art is scheduled to be completed in 2004 and estimated to cost 16 million dollars. It is being designed by architect Frank Gehry.

In August, O'Keefe and other museum supporters asked for a five million dollar bond issue. They later withdrew the request.