Two people were laid off last week, meaning Monday’s losses bring the recent total to nine. One of the job cuts announced Monday was a vacant position that will not be filled. The RSCVA is offering severance packages to the eight affected employees.
The RSCVA is projecting a budget deficit of approximately $3 million for the 2011-2012 fiscal year, the result of the continued recession in both the national and local economy, according to a press release.
“The decision to reduce staff is always a difficult one,” RSCVA Interim President and CEO Joe Kelley said in a statement. “Facing the projected shortfall for the upcoming budget, it’s an unfortunate but necessary action. The proposed budget cuts will maintain the RSCVA’s current operations, and will allow the organization to continue its focus on bringing new tourism and convention business to the region.”
Agency officials also are proposing that the one-week furlough program they implemented two years ago be extended to 12 days without pay for all full-time employees in the coming fiscal year.
With most of its funding tied to room tax revenue, the authority has seen its budget fall about 28 percent since 2008, to about $33 million, and its staff cut by about one-third to a current total of 94 full-time employees with five more being sought to fill vacancies.
The RSCVA’s operating budget for the current fiscal year is $33,053,461, down from a recent high of $45,793,504 in 2008-2009.
Kelly was named interim president/CEO in February after Ellen Oppenheim resigned, saying she needed to be with her ill mother in Texas. Oppenheim is remaining on the payroll until summer under terms of her original $225,000-a-year contract signed in 2006.
The RSCVA board of directors will address the projected budget shortfall during a workshop in April and is scheduled to vote on a proposed budget at its May 19 meeting.
Additional staff cuts are not being pursued at this time, according to the RSCVA release.