BOUNTIFUL -- A proposed regional museum project for south Davis County has moved one step closer to becoming a reality.
Members of the Bountiful Redevelopment Agency and the city council voted Tuesday in separate measures to create the framework to move a museum project forward. The RDA voted 6-0 to authorize an interlocal agreement for city staff to manage the project on behalf of the agency and authorize the use of tax increment funding to pay for the project.
The RDA vote also authorizes the agency to pay funds to the city, which then may disburse them as necessary to complete the project.
A council vote to approve the same framework passed 4-1, with Councilman Richard Higginson opposed. He cited indecision about whether the project should go forward.
Aric Jensen, the city's planning and economic development director, said what the vote doesn't do is approve a construction manager/general contractor or any exact amount of funds for the project.
The agreement only establishes the framework for doing so, he said.
Moving the project forward has been a slow process for local historians. A sluggish economy hampered fundraising efforts, and three years into the effort to raise $1.5 million, officials were forced to downsize the project.
Plans have been reduced from a $1.5 million structure with 14,000 square feet to a $1 million structure with 8,500 square feet and no basement.
The new plans also call for the building to be merged with the Bountiful/Davis Arts Center at 745 S. Main St., instead of being a separate entity.
Dean Collinwood, chairman of the Bountiful Historic Commission, plans to unveil plans for the museum sometime this year to council members.
Collinwood said organizers have $287,000 in cash and signed contracts toward the new structure, with another $51,000 in pledges.
He said to move forward with the building, city officials would have to stand by their pledge to provide up to $750,000 in funding, even if the match is only 50 cents on the dollar as a result.