New Mexico State University plans to eliminate 126 jobs — 89 that are currently vacant and 37 that are filled — as part of its efforts to address a $12.1 million budget shortfall in the current fiscal year.
The university “is making every effort to place employees who will be impacted by a position elimination into another job,” Chancellor Garrey Carruthers wrote in a memo to NMSU employees on Tuesday.
“We have made a concerted effort to maintain as many positions as possible while meeting our budget targets,” Carruthers wrote.
His memo includes no details about which jobs will be cut and how much money the employee reductions will save the university.
The budget deficit was largely caused by cuts in state funding for the university and decreased student enrollment. To help balance the budget, the Board of Regents recently approved reductions in some employee benefits, including annual and sick leave and health and other insurance. Carruthers and many other high-ranking university employees have taken pay cuts that are expected to save $190,000 a year.
But the Regents rejected a proposed tuition increase to help cover the shortfall in April, and additional cuts are needed. Eliminating the Employee Health Center is among the possibilities that has been discussed.
The Regents plan to hold a public meeting on Wednesday to discuss the situation. Carruthers’ Tuesday memo announcing the job cuts says the administration will share its “budget reduction plan for the current fiscal year” at the meeting, which is being held in Yates Auditorium, located in Domenici Hall on the main campus in Las Cruces. It begins at 2:30 p.m.
Those who can’t attend will be able to watch online here.
In his Tuesday memo, Carruthers wrote that a member of the NMSU community recently told him “we will sail this ship together through the stormy seas.”
“The waters of higher education continue to be turbulent, but I am confident that by working together we will find calmer waters and NMSU will emerge stronger and better prepared than ever to serve the people of New Mexico,” Carruthers wrote.
This BBSNews article originally appeared on NMPolitics.net.