By Adam Allington, KWMU
St. Louis, MO – The St. Louis Art Museum has laid off 16 employees.
This week's firings follow an announcement in April that the museum would offer 19 employees the opportunity for early retirement. They have until the end of the year to accept the offer.
A spokesperson for the organization cites continued downward pressure on the museum's endowment, forcing administrators cut costs by $1.5 million.
The cutbacks reduce the museum's full-time staff to 163, along with 107 part-time employees.
Despite the budget crunch, construction is still slated to go forward with a $125 million expansion. Administrators say they will break ground before the end of the year.