Maniilaq Association Lays Off Unspecified Number of Employees

Kotzebue based Maniilaq Association will be laying off around 40 employees effective immediately.

Maniilaq President Ian Erlich made the announcement Friday morning on radio station KOTZ in Kotzebue.

Erlich had sent an email to employees this week indicating the cuts, saying that some programs would no longer be in service as Maniilaq moves into FY 2012. The new fiscal year starts in October.

Erlich blamed the federal government for the health provider’s budget shortfall.

Erlich said that Maniilaq’s revenue projection for the coming fiscal year did not materialize due to Congressional action, and the reductions in federal funding caused in-house budget shortfalls, which have boomeranged into program cuts.

He said Maniilaq’s board of directors approved the move.

Maniilaq communications manager Maija Lukin says affected employees have already been notified. Lukin says Maniilaq is attempting to minimize the impact of the reductions by moving laid off employees into vacant jobs in-house. Lukin would not specify the number of jobs lost, saying only that they would be in the programs Maniilaq subsidized.

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