Last Modified: Thursday, June 07, 2012 1:38 PM
The proposed National Hurricane Museum and Science Center has ended up on the Louisiana 2012 capital outlay budget.
With the help of Lake Charles City Hall and Louisiana Sen. Ronnie Johns, museum officials requested more than $5 million to help fund the project.
Johns told the American Press that the museum has been designated $300,000 for planning, and the $5 million ended up on the budget but there is no guarantee the money will be appropriated.
“That $5 million request can work its way up the process,” Johns said. “Historically, the state has supported project like this one.”
Museum officials will attempt to raise $65 million to build the facility, that would be located on the north side of the Civic Center near Lake Charles.
Gray Stream, chairman of the museum board, the whole state will benefit if the attractions doors ever open.
“If it is built, the state would see a $51 million a year economic impact. This year we wanted to start making in-roads with local legislators to make sure they know we are making progress. So we came this year to make our foot in the door with the capital outlay bill,” he said.
By getting on the capital outlay list, museum officials are able to let potential donors know that the project is credible.
Mayor Randy Roach said getting on the capital outlay list is significant.
“This shows the continuing recognition from the state regarding the value of the project. It also show that there is life in the project and the state is willing to make a commitment. We just have to get the state to agree to make a commitment of additional funds to the project next year,” he said.
The museum will learn sometime this year if Gov. Jindal allowed a $300,000 check to be sent to the museum for use.