Without additional funds, Georgia Music Hall of Fame may close in December

The Georgia Music Hall of Fame could close its doors at the end of December if a $225,000 shortfall in its budget isn't replaced.

That option was presented Thursday during the hall of fame's quarterly authority meeting at the Georgia Department of Economic Development, officials said.

The authority will decide how to proceed at its next meeting in October, depending on how much of the shortfall is overcome.

"Between now and the next board meeting on Oct. 27, 2009, board members and staff will explore all opportunities to raise $225,000, which is the minimum amount necessary to continue operation of the Georgia Music Hall of Fame through June 30, (2010)," a statement issued by economic development. "At the October board meeting, if funds have not been identified then the board will consider approving a plan to close the museum, effective Dec. 31, 2009. If funds are identified that will provide ongoing funding to complement state appropriations, sufficient to operate the museum, then the board would consider continuing the operations of the museum."

A few weeks ago, the hall of fame announced it would close on Sundays and Mondays beginning this month in an effort to save on operating costs. The music hall and the Georgia Sports Hall of Fame had their budgets cut by the state earlier this year.

The music hall had also reduced staff from nine fulltime employees down to four earlier this year, and also implemented furloughs as further cost-cutting measures.

"Although this decision was a difficult one, the board has demonstrated strong fiscal and custodial responsibility for this institution," said music hall executive director Lisa Love. "The museum's future is dependent on strong public-private partnerships and the authority is addressing the challenges.Ó