The International Civil Rights Center & Museum met a deadline to answer budget questions from the city of Greensboro.


GREENSBORO, N.C. -- The International Civil Rights Center and Museum in Greensboro met a deadline set by the City Council.

The Greensboro City Council sent a letter to Museum Board President Deena Hayes-Greene asking for followup information on several topics regarding money the museum spends and what it owes lenders.

READ: Letter from City Council including questions to museum

Museum reps submitted their answers just before the deadline on Wednesday.

The questions revolve around money the city loaned to the museum and its business practices.

City Council has been looking for clarification on several aspects of the museum including city money the museum gave out, how much each employee makes and whether volunteers could be used in place of some paid employees.

Councilman Zack Matheny says the drawn-out questioning process is frustrating. "If we were to do this for a business, and give incentives for a business then we would ask some questions. Are you meeting the metrics of the business, per our agreement? And in this case, when we ask those questions, we get our hands slapped back and how dare you ask these questions."

But not every councilmember is in favor of asking more questions. Councilwoman Sharon Hightower said the people who are pushing for more questions are just suspicious of others and it's only creating a cloud of negativity over the museum.

Deena Hayes, Museum Board Chair, referred us to the museum attorney when asked for a comment. However, Hayes did write an opinion piece in a local paper three days ago.

In it, she said, "How badly we need this museum. Without it, what are we learning about black people, about people of color? Where is the cultural narrative to challenge stereotypes and recognize omissions?"

This is the second round of questions the city has demanded from the museum. City Council's questioning started after the museum missed two audit deadlines required to receive $1.5 million in grant money. It was later discovered that former City Manager Denise Turner Roth had already given a check for $750,000, even though the audits hadn't been received.

Meantime, city council passed a resolution forbidding any check from being signed until a contract is.

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