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Yes, it has finally happened: we got our permits sorted out! During the many years it took us to get to this point it has become apparent that the official name of our foundation with the additional word 'museum' has certainly not work in our favour simply because in order to be called an official 'museum' the authorities have this extra set of rules and regulations meaning that only a handful museums can comply to. Certainly a lot of extras a starting museum can do without. With this in mind we are seriously considering a name change for our foundation.
Work in progress (as usual), but things are looking better than ever before.
Local council appeared to have quite some internal problems resulting in a dismissal of the entire board last year. There was even talk that the mayor had to leave as well. Not surprising after the many problems we personally encountered with this board over the years. Meanwhile a new council has been formed and the person we had been talking to previously has been replaced by someone else. It can only get better.
Still no answer for the Ministry of Justice. Meanwhile local council is also far from cooperative, and had even the nerve to make a bold statement that they were not that keen of another disaster like Enschede (fire-work explosion) or Volendam (fire in a bar on New Year's Eve 2000). No idea what a museum has to do with these two disasters. Of course we are very curious why we are compared with the criminals responsible for these two disasters. To our disappointment a request for a meeting with the Mayor was bluntly denied.
Yesterday we had the scheduled hearing at the Ministry of Justice. People were quite willing to listen, but despite all this we are not really sure at this stage what the final outcome is going to be. Fingers crossed.
Regional Police Utrecht has finally decided, after 18 months of slowing down the process with an extensive correspondence and several meetings (which is easy on the tax-payer's money and in the boss' time), that the answer is NO with regard to the permit. We now need to go to the Ministry of Justice to appeal to this decision. Time and money consuming no doubt.
Thin Blue Line is playing hard to get when it comes to providing us with the necessary permits, as a result of which we need to keep our doors closed to the public for the time being. Hopefully this red tape business is solved by the end of this year. Our sincere apologies for this inconvenience.