GRAND ISLAND — Eight full-time employees at the Nebraska State Fair have lost their jobs.
The workers were fired last week as fair officials restructure the organization amid financial problems.
State Fair Executive Director Lori Cox says the restructuring will save about $520,000 in personnel costs.
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Before the firings, the fair employed 17 full-time workers and one part-timer.
Cox says the smaller full-time payroll reflects that the fair is an “11-day operation” rather than a year-round operation.
Television station NTV reported that among the employees to lose their jobs were Lori Arterburn, the fair's financial controller; Chelsey Jungck, chief of events; and Bill Angell, livestock division director.
The State Fair Board approved a budget at a Nov. 22 meeting where members learned the 2019 fair lost a projected $1.4 million.
Patrick Kopke, the fair’s chief of finance and administration, resigned at that meeting after telling the board that changes were needed to avoid bankruptcy.