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UPDATED: MOCA reports a balanced budget for 2009

May 22, 2009 | 12:54 pm


Just a few months ago, the Los Angeles Museum of Contemporary Art was in dire financial straits, struggling with deficits and a badly depleted endowment with dire concerns for its longevity.

Today the museum announced that it will finish its 2009 fiscal year with a balanced budget, and that the institution is taking added restructuring steps to ensure a balanced budget for its 2010 fiscal year. A combination of cost-saving measures, along with cuts made in January, reduced MOCA's annual expenditures from about $20 million to $15.5 million, the museum said.

(*UPDATE: MOCA also announced that its restructuring also required reducing the staff by 17 positions, including two museum curators, and other staff have agreed to reductions in hours or salary; senior staff has agreed to a salary cut of at least 5%. Employee benefits have been reduced for all staff members. In addition, four exhibitions have been canceled).

"With stringent budget constraints and an economic environment that continues to be challenging, we have had to restructure and reduce our operations. It is with great reluctance that we have had to make further cuts," MOCA Chief Executive Charles E. Young said in a statement. "However, these are essential steps forward in returning MOCA to financial health by bringing our staff and program to a sustainable size. We are making significant progress at ensuring stability, while enabling the institution to continue the pursuit of its mission and maintain its stature as an institution of global significance."

The museum also announced the appointment of two new Board of Trustees members, Carolyn Powers, effective in September, and Marc I. Stern, effective immediately.

 -- Reed Johnson

Photo credit: Brian Vander Brug / Los Angeles Times