WHITE ROCK - The White Rock Museum and Archives Society is appealing to council for more funding, saying that it is running out of room at its current location.
In a presentation to council Monday night, museum director Paul Oxley made an appeal to council asking for $185,000 - more than twice the museum's current annual funding of $92,000.
Executive director Sharon Oldaker said the funds would be for modernizing its facilities.
"Basically, we're looking to move the museum forward so we're simply not able to fulfill the operating and service agreement with the current funding," said Oldaker.
The museum's funding has fluctuated over the past two decades. While it was receiving $100,000 in 1994, that number was later reduced to $85,000 before being raised to the current $92,000 in 2005.
"The $185,000 is a substantial increase, but museums have changed radically in the last few years," said Oldaker. "People are looking for more interactive exhibits, new experiences and exhibits that come from other countries and parts of the world. They're looking for a whole new experience than what they're used to, something more hands-on so we want to be one of the best small-town museums in the province."
Coun. Alan Campbell said he understands the museum's plight and wondered if it might need a second site for storing archived material.
"If you think about it, it's our museum, it's a really important part of the beach and White Rock, but there's absolute limitations on that building. They can't go backwards, can't go forward, can't go up, and can't go down," he said. "It's a heritage building so really they're looking for more space and money and we sort of suggested that it might help them if there was additional space somewhere else they could archive their things so it isn't all locked up in one area."
For Coun. Helen Fathers, she was surprised to hear that only around 700 to 800 visitors attend the museum each year.
"That doesn't seem an awful lot," she said, adding that they talked about different revenue streams and how to maximize grant funding from all levels of government. "It's a great thing that we have but obviously they need more money."
As for the request for funding, city staff is expected to come back to council with an official report and recommendations at a later date.
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