Port staff slashed from 3 to 2Red Wing Port Authority Board approved the layoff of one of the agency's three staff members Thursday as it prepared its 2011 budget.
By: Jon Swedien, The Republican Eagle
Red Wing Port Authority Board approved the layoff of one of the agency's three staff members Thursday as it prepared its 2011 budget.
The economic development agency will lay off executive assistant Missy Voth, who performed clerical and administrative tasks. The staff cut is expected to save the agency roughly $50,000. The agency's entire budget next year is currently set at $529,791.
"Nobody likes layoffs," Board Chair Tom Brown said. "These are difficult decisions we have to make."
Recently, the port has been under financial duress. Costs related to holding land for development has put the agency in debt. Over the past year the Port Board has looked to make cutbacks to reduce the agency's red ink.
While the port has had success in reducing some of the costs associated with carrying development land, the board still felt a decided a staff cut was necessary.
Port Board member Jim Kelm was the only dissenter in a 6-1 vote Thursday approving the layoff.
"Our fundamental issue is debt service on land," Kelm said.
Kelm argued it didn't make sense to cut staff in order to pay down a debt that was created by holding land for development.
Port Board member Ralph Rauterkus noted the agency is moving later this month from the Red Wing Community Development building next door to City Hall.
"There's other administrative personnel in that building," Rauterkus said, noting that might help ease the agency's personnel loss.