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Providence Looking to Cut Municipal Funding of Zoo

Providence Looking to Cut Municipal Funding of Zoo

NewsRadio 920 WHJJ and the Associated Press

PROVIDENCE, R.I. (AP) — Providence officials are looking to phase out the city's financial support of the Roger Williams Park Zoo.

It's been nine years since the city turned management of the 40-acre zoo to the nonprofit Rhode Island Zoological Society, giving it financial, marketing and operational control.

It cost the society $7.9 million to run the zoo in 2912. City Parks Superintendent Robert F. McMahon says that does not include $2.7 million the city pays for salaries and benefits for 31 zookeepers and veterinarian technicians and the zoo's utilities.

The Providence Journal reports that the city and zoological society are negotiating a management contract to replace a 10-year deal expiring in 2015.

Finance Director Lawrence Mancini says the objective is to "cut the cord" on how much the city will subsidize the zoo's budget.

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