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Seneca County Museum closed due to county budgetary concerns

County commissioners say coronavirus shutdown will reduce this year's general fund by $2 million.

SENECA COUNTY, Ohio — A piece of local history has closed it's doors as a direct result of the financial impact of the COVID-19 pandemic. 

Opened in 1943, The Seneca County Museum has shared pieces of Seneca County history inside of the home of the county's first millionaire.

But with a projected reduction of $2 million in this year's general fund due to the coronavirus shut down, the county has to trim non-vital services.

As a result, last month the Seneca County Commissioner informed the Seneca County Museum Advisory Board that they will be shutting down museum operations.

The county also laid off current museum director Tonia Hoffert.

County Commissioner Mike Kerschner said it was a difficult decision to make, but with so much financial uncertainty right now, it was the correct decision.

"We certainly were trying to find a way to keep it open, whenever you're working with people's livelihoods and dealing with projects. There are a multiple number of volunteers for the museum the we so much appreciate," said Kerschner

Kershner said the museum is expected to eventually reopen, but that won't happen until all of the long lasting economic ripple effects of the pandemic play out and the county returns to normal.

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