Senator Scarnati and Speaker Smith Announce $2 Million Awarded for Museum Grants

May 29, 2014

HARRISBURG – Museums and historical societies in Pennsylvania have been awarded a total of $2 million for 130 grants, according to Senate President Pro Tempore Joe Scarnati (R-25) and Speaker of the House Sam Smith (R-66).

Scarnati explained that the grants were awarded as part of the state’s Cultural and Historical Support program, which is administered by the Pennsylvania Historical and Museum Commission (PHMC).  The goal of the program is to strengthen the Pennsylvania museum community through providing general operating support to museums and official county historical societies that are not supported by other state agency funding programs.

“Our Commonwealth is fortunate to have outstanding museums and historical societies across Pennsylvania,” Senator Scarnati said. “I am glad that these grants will help offer assistance to historical sites so that they can continue to provide excellent educational opportunities within our communities.”

“Museums inspire curiosity and allow people to interpret works of art, history and culture,” Speaker Smith stated. “For the public good, they collect, safeguard and hold in trust valuable artifacts.”

According to Speaker Smith, this is the second year that legislative leaders have worked to ensure funding for museum grants was included in the state budget appropriation.  This year’s program furthered the efforts of last year’s program, which allotted just over $1 million in funding for the grants in the 2012-13 state budget.

“We are pleased that this year’s program was able to expand upon the success of last year, and now provide aid to some of our smaller, local museums and historical societies,” Scarnati and Smith stated.  “These grants are an important investment in helping communities across our state to preserve history for future generations to learn from.”

Local Museums and Organizations receiving awards include:

  • Cameron County Historical Society (Cameron County) – $2,500
  • Clearfield County Historical Society (Clearfield County) – $3,000
  • Clinton County Historical Society (Clinton County) – $4,000
  • Piper Aviation Museum Foundation (Clinton County) – $3,737
  • Jefferson County Historical Society (Jefferson County) – $4,000
  • Punxsutawney Weather Discovery Center (Jefferson County) – $3,000
  • Eldred World War II Museum (McKean County) – $3,000
  • Elk County Historical Society (Elk County) – $2,500
  • Tioga County Historical Society (Tioga County) – $4,000

The program was open to museums located in Pennsylvania, as well as Official County Historical Societies.   Award amounts were determined using an equation based on a percentage of the eligible museum’s previous year’s operating budget. The maximum any museum could receive was $65,000. The maximum for historical societies was $4,000. 

For more information on the program, please visit PHMC’s website: www.phmc.state.pa.us. 

CONTACT: 

Kate Eckhart – Senator Scarnati – (717) 787-7084 or keckhart@pasen.gov

Kelly Fedeli – Speaker Smith – (717) 783-1633 or kfedeli@pahousegop.com