Advertisement
YOU ARE HERE: LAT HomeCollections

ARTS NOTES

Don't fret, just send money

August 03, 2003|Christopher Reynolds

If you're a member of the Los Angeles County Museum of Art and received a telephone call recently that warned of a $150,000 budget shortfall -- do not be alarmed, museum officials say.

In recent weeks, a New York-based telemarketing company has been asking museum members for annual-fund donations beyond their yearly membership fee. One call happened to reach the household of a Times staff writer, who was told that the money-raising effort is aimed at closing a $150,000 "shortfall."

Asked about that, LACMA officials said the figure is just the telemarketers' internal target and was never supposed to be part of the solicitors' pitch to the museum's roughly 70,000 members. In fact, though the shaky stock market and uncertain economic climate have brought hard times for many museums, the 320-employee LACMA has avoided layoffs and program reductions.

For the fiscal year ended June 30, 2002 -- the last period for which tax-disclosure figures are available -- LACMA reported $41.2 million in revenue against $53.1 million in expenses. That operating deficit of $11.9 million followed a surplus of $9.5 million for the previous year. The museum's tax forms also make clear that telephone pitch-making is nothing new for LACMA. In 2001-02, the museum spent $227,835 on telemarketing firm Infocision Management Corp. of Akron, Ohio.

-- Christopher Reynolds

Advertisement
Los Angeles Times Articles
|
|
|