In order to avoid deficits for fiscal year 2014 and beyond, the Contemporary Arts Center on Monday laid off four employees and Director/Chief Curator Raphaela Platow announced other cost-saving measures.
The four positions were associate curator of education, exhibitions director, development director and director of communications and community engagement. Additionally, Platow herself took a 20 percent salary reduction for the upcoming fiscal year.
Platow said cost-saving decisions were approved by the Board of Trustees in April. The board has mandated that the CAC reduce its dependency on its endowment for operational expenses by roughly $60,000 a year for the next five years. The CAC estimates that cutback, as well as an expected drop in support from major funders, would create an operating-budget deficit for the next fiscal year without these moves. The operating budget for the current fiscal year, which ends in August, is $3.1 million.
She also said there are no plans to raise admission fees or reduce hours of operation.
While the four eliminated positions represent 16% of the institution’s staff, there will be several new hirings of “redefined and reorganized” job descriptions, she said. “By redefining, I mean changing to a different skill set and position, sometimes on a very different salary level. This is what we have to do to move forward,” Platow said.
A previously announced new curatorial hire, Steven Matijcio, arrives from North Carolina in June and will be involved in announcing the 2013-2014 exhibition season on June 26.
(More information will be included in The Big Picture column in the May 29 issue.)