Public hearing scheduled on Illinois State Museum closing

SPRINGFIELD, Ill. (AP) — Members of the public will have a chance to testify on Gov. Bruce Rauner’s push to close the Illinois State Museum. The Springfield bureau of Lee Enterprises reports the hearing is set for Monday afternoon at the Capitol. Dozens of people are expected to speak. Rauner announced he wanted to close the institution to save about $4.8 million at a time when Illinois is struggling financially. Members of the public have already been submitting their views to the Commission on Government Forecasting and Accountability. So far more than 170 people worldwide have said they’re opposed. Some comments focus on the value of art, while others blast the decision as shortsighted. The museum draws roughly 200,000 visitors each year and employs almost 70 people. Admission to the museum is free.