Rent Battle: Harrisburg mayor wants Civil War Museum to pay

Written by The Associated Press | Feb 27, 2015 12:47 PM

Photo by Ben Allen/witf

A Harrisburg City Council committee meeting in October 2014 at the National Civil War Museum.

(Harrisburg) -- Pickett's Charge didn't work. Papenfuse's might not either.

Harrisburg Mayor Eric Papenfuse says he wants to jack up the National Civil War Museum's rent from $1 to $183,000 this year and gradually increase it to $633,0 per year by 2030.

The head of the non-profit museum says the rent proposal is baffling. Wayne Motts says the museum is abiding by its current arrangement, which runs to 2031 and includes a nominal rent charge.

Papenfuse proposed the museum pay fair market rent to resolve a dispute over a portion of hotel taxes it's been receiving. The regional visitors bureau had instead offered to spend $100,000 promoting other Harrisburg attractions.

Papenfuse says the city, which owns the museum's building, land and many artifacts, can't afford giving away rent.

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