AUBURN, Ind. (WFFT and AP) - A newly-formed nonprofit is set to raise money to restore and rebuild a historic northeastern Indiana library heavily damaged by an arson fire.
Auburn's Eckhart Public Library has been closed since the July 2017 swept through the building after a man placed a lit, mortar-style firework in its book return chute.
The new Eckhart Library Foundation was established in March and efforts are now underway to secure a 501(c)(3) tax status that will enable all donations to be tax-deductible by donors.
The foundation hopes to raise $12 million in a captial campaign.
The money raised will go toward repairing the damage caused by the fire and supporting the library's future operation.
Monday, the foundation announced a $4 million matching gift from the James Foundation and $981,967 from library patron Dorotha Schrader's estate, who died in 2016.
With the combined pledges and insurance settlements, the campaing is about 75 percent toward its goal.
A 24-year-old Auburn man pleaded guilty to an arson charge in the fire was sentenced last year to 12 years in prison.
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