LAS VEGAS (FOX5) -- Nevada Gov. Steve Sisolak announced 50 state agency employees will face layoffs due to the Fiscal 2021 budget shortfall, in a letter sent to staffers Thursday.
The state estimates a $900 million General Fund shortfall. However, combined with the Distributive School Account, monies which provide direct financial aid to K-12 school districts and charters throughout the state, the revenue shortfall adds up to $1.3 billion for the upcoming fiscal year. Nevada's overall operating appropriations total $4.5 billion.
In addition, all state employees can expect a proposed one-day furlough per month beginning July 1 and a freeze on merit salary increases for the next fiscal year, Sisolak said.
The governor continued that despite the noble efforts to flatten the curve and round-the-clock first responders working to keep Nevada safe, the economic toll COVID-19 has taken on Nevada's economy was "sobering."
"None of us could have predicted a pandemic of this magnitude and the global economic impact that it has created," Sisolak lamented in a video address. "The economic crisis caused by the COVID-19 pandemic has forced us to take a different direction with our state budget, in response to our changed economic reality."
Sisolak said state officials worked with agencies to reduce the anticipated amount of layoffs from 450 to 50 jobs. Health insurance and retirement benefits will be unchanged at this time, the governor said.
Nevada's congressional leaders continue to press for federal funding to help fill the funding gap, Sisolak said, and are pushing for a special session in the legislature to finalize these budgetary proposals by July 1. The Nevada Legislature's 81st Session will convene February 1, 2021.
This is a developing story. Check back for updates.