Pa. Senate unanimously supports turning mining museum over to Ashland
HARRISBURG - Legislation that would convey the Museum of Anthracite Mining to the Borough of Ashland received unanimous approval Thursday in the state Senate, according to bill sponsor Sen. David G. Argall (R-29).
Senate Bill 430 would allow Ashland to purchase the property from the state for $1 with the guarantee that the borough would maintain the property's historical covenant.
"In 1971, the borough granted the property to the state, and now we are trying to give it back to the borough since they have effectively taken over running all operations of the property," Argall said. "It's onerous red tape we are trying to cut to allow the borough to have complete control of the property and still maintain our area's rich coal mining history by keeping the museum operational."
The bill has the support of the Department of General Services, the Pennsylvania Historical and Museum Commission and the Borough of Ashland.
Included in the proposal, the state is guaranteed that the property is operated as a museum by the borough. If not, the property would immediately revert to the state's ownership.
The bill now heads to the House of Representatives for consideration.
Representative Neal Goodman (D-123) introduced House Bill 616, which mirrors Argall's legislation, in the House of Representatives.