KCUR News
12:36 pm
Thu August 27, 2009

Liberty Memorial Asks To Tap Endowment Interest

Kansas City, MO – Facing a budget trimmed $300,000 by the city council, Liberty Memorial officials are asking permission to use 90 percent of the interest from the Liberty Memorial Endowment fund for routine maintenance on the Kansas City landmark.

The Liberty Memorial endowment fund was originally intended to grow by compounding interest for future major maintenance projects.

The proposal to use most of the interest for routine maintenance came before the council finance and audit committee Wednesday, but the committee would only recommend skimming the interest through next year.

Councilman Russ Johnson explained: "I'm not comfortable with changing it for all time because we'll soon get into a habit of changing it and then ten years from now when you have the ol' tuckpointing you need to do or whatever, you're not going to have any money to do it."

Final approval has to come from the full council.

The city has tapped the endowment fund or other purposes twice since 2000, most recently borrowing $10 million from it for the recent renovation.