Pentagon furloughs will take their hardest toll on the workforces of Virginia, California and Texas, and the private sector will feel the effects as personal spending slows, one economist said. The Pentagon says furloughs, which begin in July, will affect 72,000 in Virginia, 57,000 in California and 45,000 in Texas.
Furlough notices for civilian Pentagon employees are on hold for two weeks as the department combs through a continuing resolution spending bill just passed by Congress. The measure appears to free up some funds that could shrink the number of furlough days for Pentagon workers. The delay means the first furlough notices are set to go out April 5.
Workers at the Pentagon will begin receiving notices warning of impending furloughs, the first of which will begin April 25. Up to 800,000 civilian workers at the Defense Department face furloughs, which will occur in stages to Sept. 21. The furloughs are the result of sequestration, which Senate Armed Services Committee Chairman Carl Levin, D-Mich., says the federal government is "not going to be able to avoid" the first year.
Nearly 800,000 civilian workers at the Pentagon may face furloughs at the end of April if sequestration takes effect, Secretary of Defense Leon Panetta said. By the middle of next month, employees may receive warnings that they could be furloughed. The Defense Department doesn't expect to lay off workers this year but said layoffs are a possibility next year.
Sen. John McCain, R-Ariz., has requested a report from Secretary of Defense Leon Panetta detailing the anticipated costs of severance that would be carried out if sequestration occurs. The request is in response to guidance issued by the Office of Management and Budget stating that defense contractors are not required to send notices to their employees who may be laid off due to sequestration. The OMB memo also said that the government would cover the severance costs to companies that do not send the 60-day notices.