The New Mexico Institute of Mining and Technology sounds like an innocuous enough of a place, right. When you hear the name you probably picture students heading towards their classes, people working in a lab or maybe even some of the Greek life, depending on your college experiences. I bet you did not know that the college actually owns a small town.
No, not like most college towns, where the economy is so dependant that the school feels like it owns the town. I am talking about a real town that the school actually owns. The city, known as Playas, is the home of the Playas and Training Research Center.
For those of you who have never heard of the site here is a look at how the school describes it, “The Playas Training and Research Center (PTRC) in southwestern New Mexico is a unique center of excellence providing training, operational support and research, development, test and evaluation in a real world environment for customer organizations using our experience, expertise and facilities to develop, evaluate and deploy techniques and technologies to improve the safety, security and global quality of life.” The facility is currently used mostly as an anti-terrorism training center, complete with a model of a village in Afghanistan and actors who play accurate roles in village life. The site helps to train some of our soldiers before they are deployed, in order to help them acclimate as quickly as possible. The facility is also used by other law enforcement professionals who use the facility for urban training and tactics work.
Well, it looks the facility is getting a serious staff reduction. The school announced that it is going to be laying off all of the members of the support staff for the facility. For those of you who are in search of hard numbers, that is a loss of about 70 jobs from the facility. The school was not clear if that number included any of the actors that the school employs to play different roles in the scenarios.
Either way these cuts will be enough to ensure that the school is making a mass layoff action. For those of you who are not familiar with the idea of a mass layoff action here is a look at how the federal government defines the term, “Monthly mass layoff numbers are from establishments which have at least 50 initial claims for unemployment insurance (UI) filed against them during a 5-week period. Extended mass layoff numbers (issued quarterly) are from a subset of such establishments—where private sector nonfarm employers indicate that 50 or more workers were separated from their jobs for at least 31 days.” During a mass layoff action special notice must be give so workers have time to prepare for the job losses.
The school made the cuts as part of a major restructure to the unprofitable facility. In addition the school will be making some closures on the campus that are likely to impact jobs, as locations like the school store, an on campus restaurant and the campus day care are going to be closed in order to help the school to stay in the black and out of the red.New Mexico Institute of Mining and Technology to Cut Jobs by Harrison Barnes