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City of Solvang lays off eight employees after COVID-19 leads to economic uncertainty

Posted at 7:11 PM, Mar 28, 2020
and last updated 2020-03-28 22:11:16-04

In a message penned to the community Saturday, Ryan Toussaint, the Mayor of Solvang, gave an update on the economic impacts the city is facing following the COVID-19 pandemic.

Toussaint says the city had to lay off eight employees whose job duties "do not fall within essential services categories."

The city also cut or shifted contracts with private service providers to help focus on providing essential public services and recovery.

Toussaint says due to staffing shortages, the remaining staff now has to work many hours of overtime to respond to the public health emergency.

The city says it is in the process of moving antiquated methods of handling services over to digital and streamlined methods, which may have also lead to the change of need for certain city positions.

Toussaint says the city could lose over one million dollars in revenue in the next two months alone, from the lost of TOT and sales tax.

If the public health emergency lasts longer, Toussaint believes the revenue loss could be even greater.

The city is encouraging anyone with questions or concerns about city decision to virtually join the City Council meeting on Monday, March 30th at 6:30 p.m.

The live stream of the meeting can be found here.