Sandoval adviser to newspaper: Museum closings unlikely

Dale Erquiaga, a top adviser to Gov.-elect Brian Sandoval, says it is unlikely state sponsored museums will be closed due budget shortfalls.

Erquiaga made the statement to the Nevada Appeal newspaper in Carson City in response to fears that several museums would be closed.

That’s because closing museums around the state could result in vandalism or theft of outdoor exhibits and force the state to return items to donors, a move that would damage the credibility of remaining museums and future preservation efforts. Also, the savings would be minimal, according to the article.

“In some cases it ends up being more expensive,” to close museums, Erquiaga told the paper.

Museums that were rumored to be on the chopping block included; railroad museums in Carson City and Ely, the Nevada Historical Society in Reno and the Lost City Museum in Southern Nevada, the Carson City paper stated.

It’s the second deviation by Sandoval from agency budget proposals submitted to Gov. Jim Gibbons, whose term ends Monday.

Earlier this week at a press conference Sandoval said he won’t cut personal care attendant services from the Department of Health and Human Services. 

The cut would have saved more than $50 million over the biennium but also would have resulted in hygiene, bathroom and feeding assistance being taken from more than 6,500 elderly and disabled people.

Sandoval’s proposed 2011-13 general fund budget is scheduled to go to the printer a week from Friday and be released to the public in advance of the Jan. 24 state of the state speech.

Currently, projected revenue is estimated to be as much as $3 billion less than anticipated expenses. Sandoval has promised to bridge the gap without raising taxes.

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