Smithsonian to Close Galleries Due to Budget Cuts

Smithsonian expected to begin rolling gallery closures after May 1

By Brett Zongker
|  Tuesday, Apr 16, 2013  |  Updated 8:55 AM EDT
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Budget cuts from Congress will soon reduce the number of free exhibitions on view each day at the Smithsonian Institution.

According to written testimony, Smithsonian Secretary Wayne Clough plans to tell Congress on Tuesday that the museum complex must reduce its security contract for gallery attendants because of the budget cuts. As a result, the Smithsonian plans to begin rolling gallery closures after May 1.

Clough says the Smithsonian also will likely have to postpone or cancel exhibits for 2014 and 2015.

The Smithsonian has been working to keep its museums open. It had to reduce its budget by at least $41 million due to across-the-board cuts imposed by Congress.

Separately, the National Archives saw a nearly $20 million cut and has already reduced its operating hours.

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