ROCKLAND, Maine — The extensive collection of lighthouse artifacts will remain at the Maine Lighthouse Museum following a meeting between city and museum officials and the Coast Guard.

The collection of more than 700 items, on loan from the Coast Guard, had been at risk of being returned to the military service.

Capt. Edward Marohn, spokesman for the Coast Guard First District, said Thursday the Tuesday meeting was productive and the Coast Guard is more confident the collection is safe and is being cared for properly.

The goal is to renew the loan agreement between the Coast Guard and the city, Marohn said.

The meeting held at city hall and then the museum this week follows the city’s receipt of a letter on April 24 from the Coast Guard’s curator, who informed the city the Coast Guard wanted the more than 700 exhibits at the museum returned to the Coast Guard.

The Maine Lighthouse Museum exhibits the Coast Guard collection at 1 Park Drive in a building it shares with the city and Maine Lobster Festival through a condominium arrangement. The city announced in early March the condominium association was broke because the museum, which occupies 50 percent of the building, had not paid its share of expenses since 2009 and owed $148,000.

After word got back to the Coast Guard, its curator, Arlyn Danielson, wrote in a letter to the city dated April 24, “In order to properly preserve, care for, and maintain these important artifacts, we need to make arrangements to return them to the Coast Guard as soon as possible. The duration of this loan as well as the recent financial hardships have put this collection of valuable and historically significant artifacts at risk.”

Marohn said Thursday, however, there may have been a misunderstanding about the financial situation of the museum and whether the facility could care for the exhibits. That was answered in this week’s meeting, he said.

The Coast Guard captain said the commander of the First District, which stretches from Maine to New York, wanted to be involved in the discussions because of the close ties between the Coast Guard and Rockland. Rockland is designated as a Coast Guard City, one of only 16 in the country so recognized for its support of the organization, its members and their families. The Coast Guard also has had a station and ships in Rockland since World War II.

The Coast Guard plans to return in the fall to conduct a full inventory of the collection on loan to the city and exhibited by the Maine Lighthouse Museum. He said the Coast Guard does not want to interfere with the operation of the museum during the busy tourist season.

“I feel like the weight of the world has been lifted off my shoulder,” Paul Dilger, the chairman of the museum board, said Thursday.

He said that during Tuesday’s meeting museum officials explained to the Coast Guard they were working to rectify its financial problems. Dilger said the museum has raised $30,000 toward a goal of $100,000 this year and has applied and passed the first stage of selection for a private foundation grant of $100,000.

Marohn said he did not know yet how many artifacts would be included in the renewal of the Coast Guard’s loan to the museum. He said if there are items that have been in storage and not exhibited for a long time then there could be discussions about how to best exhibit those.

He said the Rockland loan agreement has been unique in terms of the large number of items and the length of time they have been on loan.

The collection of lights from lighthouses was started by former Coast Guard Cmdr. Ken Black in 1971. The collection first was kept at the Coast Guard station in Rockland and then the Shore Village Museum on Limerock Street before relocating a decade ago to 1 Park Drive, where the lighthouse museum initially leased and then purchased space in the building.

A telephone message left Thursday morning with Rockland City Manager James Chaousis was not immediately returned. The manager suggested a month ago that a coalition of other nonprofit organizations and the city could make an offer to Camden National Bank to pay off the mortgage owed by the lighthouse museum, but that proposal was met with no support on the City Council.

Representatives of U.S. Sen. Angus King and the Penobscot Marine Museum also attended the meeting, Marohn said. King sent a letter Monday to the Coast Guard, urging it to retain at least the bulk of the collection in Rockland.

“I hope the USCG will take a broad view of this important collection and seek ways to allow the major pieces to remain in the area where they were first gathered,” the letter from King stated. “As a cultural landmark and the clear representation of the importance in which the City of Rockland holds the USCG, this collection represents more than the items in the collection.”