LCG will lay off 101 employees in cultural positions

Guillory speaks at a coronavirus press briefing

Mayor-President Josh Guillory announced late Friday afternoon that 101 LCG employees were notified today that they will be laid off June 5 due to financial straits caused by coronavirus.

In a press release, the administration called today’s cuts “the first steps in a number of measures to address the financial shortfalls in this fiscal year and in preparation for the budget planning cycle” leading up to the beginning of the new fiscal year, which starts Nov. 1.

The layoffs include 23 full-time and 78 part-time employees who work at the Acadiana Nature Station, the Science Museum, three senior centers and the Heymann Center. Six employees from these centers are being retained to ensure the security and well-being of these physical locations. Six vacant positions are also being eliminated.

The cuts are the result of several weeks of meetings, discussions and exploration with department directors, the administration, the Human Resources Division and the Civil Service Department, according to Guillory.

These facilities either remain closed or are operating at a maximum of 25% capacity in compliance with the emergency declarations of the governor.

“In taking this latest step, we continue to carefully review our operating and capital budgets; we have cancelled discretionary contracts and budgetary line items; eliminated dozens of vacant positions; and are postponing or eliminating capital expenditures where appropriate,” Guillory said.

“We will revisit the issues underlying the impact on these positions and the operation of these entities during our budget process this summer, in consultation with our City and Parish Councils,” the mayor said in the press release.

From the press release:

  • Employees being laid off were notified today, provided two weeks paid employment, and advance notice to make preparations. 
  • These employees will be placed on the Civil Service “rehire” list so that they may immediately return to work if and when circumstances permit.  
  • Employees may apply for unemployment benefits and LCG will provide support and assistance in doing so.
  • Employees who are laid off will receive payment for accrued vacation leave and accrued sick leave that has not been expended, consistent with existing regulations governing these forms of compensation.
  • Eligible employees may also elect to retire at this time, with all of the associated benefits.

If LCG is able to secure additional funding from state or federal sources, if the fiscal situation materially changes, or if there is a clear path to the full reopening of these institutions, some or all of these positions may be restored at the beginning of the new fiscal year.