City gets help to manage zoo

Published 3:14 am Sunday, November 1, 2009

The Hattiesburg Convention and Tourism commissions are taking over part of the management of the Hattiesburg Zoo.

Officials say the partnership will make the zoo more marketable, and ultimately save city taxpayers.

Mayor Johnny DuPree says that the city subsidizes about $800,000 of the zoo’s annual $1.2 million budget, and the two commissions think that can be cut by at least 20 percent.

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The contract takes effect Wednesday.

The mayor says the city will continue current subsidies in two years, but hopes to see at least a 10 percent cut in that amount by the third year.

The commissions also share management of the Saenger Theater and Historic USO Club.