Facing budget shortfall, Wenatchee Valley College will be laying off 20 employees

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Facing a $1 million budget shortfall, Wenatchee Valley College announced Thursday it’s laying off 20 employees beginning Jan. 31. 

In a news release late yesterday afternoon, WVC President Jim Richardson said “I understand this is a painful time for our campus and in no way do these layoffs reflect the quality and dedication of the employees who are affected.”

Of the 20 employees being laid off, 12 are classified union employees and 8 are exempt, non-union employees.

No teachers were a part of the reduction of staff. 

Exempt and classified employees have already agreed to take varying amounts of non-paid furlough days during the school year. 

Last month the college announced that enrollment was down 2.1 percent from last year, following a trend of declining enrollment over the last decade.

The college, working on early projections last summer, was expecting a small increase in enrollment.

The college currently employs 499 people, with 249 of them full-time.

The college said the budget cuts will not affect the number of courses being offered this year.

The budget shortfall also will have no bearing on the construction of the new Wells Hall. That $37 million project received $32 million from the state Legislature this year.

The Wenatchee Valley College Foundation is in the process of raising additional funding for that project.