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The Pentagon says furloughs for nearly all of its 780,000 civilian employees would begin in April if sequestration goes into effect. DoD would grant limited exceptions for civilians in combat zones or those who are critical to preserving life and safety. Political appointees would also be exempt. The Pentagon also released a list of states where furloughs would have the most effect.
The Pentagon's budget chief, Robert Hale, told reporters that the economic impact of sequestration would be felt nationwide. The biggest potential losses, in term of total civilian payroll dollars, would be in Virginia, California, Maryland, Texas and Georgia, he said. Hale said the unpaid leaves for civilian workers would begin in late April and would save $4 billion to $5 billion if extended through the end of the budget year, Sept. 30.
With sequestration set to go into effect in fewer than two weeks, many in the Defense Department are concerned the looming cuts are likely and will have a devastating effect on military readiness. Former Deputy Defense Secretary Bill Lynn, now the CEO of DRS Technologies, told Pentagon Solutions with Francis Rose the cuts will have a long-lasting impact on Pentagon planning.
Federal News Radio wants to know what you think. Will sequestration go into effect when the deadline hits on March 1?
James Clapper, the director of National Intelligence, tells Federal News Radio he's concerned about the effects of sequestration on the intelligence community.
Bill Lynn, former deputy secretary of Defense and now chief executive officer of DRS Technologies, joins Pentagon Solutions with Francis Rose to discuss how the Pentagon has prepared for the automatic, across-the-board budget cuts.
Among the warnings the military's top uniformed officers delivered to the Senate Tuesday: Half of Marine Corps units will fall below readiness standards by the end of the year, the Army will have to curtail training for 80 percent of its ground forces and shipyards are already becoming short-staffed because of DoD's hiring freeze.
US military's top leaders says looming spending cuts may leave troops unprepared for combat
As sequestration draws nearer, contractor groups have pointed to alarming studies that show the 9 percent in across-the-board Defense cuts would throw at least 1 million people out of work and potentially cripple the defense and aerospace industries. But in a new report, the Center for International Policy, a nonprofit group which advocates reducing military spending, presented evidence that far fewer defense-sector jobs would be lost than industry has claimed and that defense companies would likely be able to absorb the defense cuts.
The Air Force's long-range planning and modernization takes back seat to preparations for near-term crises, including contingency plans to scale back civilian workforce. Civilian furloughs would be "breach of faith," Air Force says.
Are you sick of hearing the F-word coming out of Washington? Would you offer yourself up as buyout bait? If the answer to either is yes, check out Senior Correspondent Mike Causey's Federal Report for the latest forecast.
Robert Litan discusses a Bloomberg Government study about rule-making in the Obama administration. Michael Tinsley, CEO of NeoSystems Corp., offers insight on how furloughs might affect federal contractors. Procurement attorney Joe Petrillo weighs in on a a 2012 Supreme Court case that could come back to bite federal agencies facing budget cuts under sequestration. Gregory Wilshusen discusses a new GAO report on how prepared agencies are to fend of online assaults. John Palguta of the Partnership for Public Service talks about sequestration and the threat of furloughs.
Thanks to top government officials, we now have the definitive answer as to whether the government will have a series of furloughs and if so how they will work. The answer is either yes or no. There seems to be a little confusion at the top, Senior Correspondent Mike Causey says.
Shortfalls in operating accounts would mean military units would be undertrained, underequipped and unable to deploy by the end of fiscal 2013, senior DoD officials predict.
Round one is already in effect and includes a civilian hiring freeze, cancellation of conferences, cutbacks on training, and a reduction in IT spending for the Navy. Round two would involve unpaid civilian furloughs, operational reductions for deployed ships, and cuts to tuition assistance for sailors.
DoD's operations and maintenance accounts will likely be hit first if sequestration goes into effect. Unlike its procurement and research and development activities, which can continue to function on funds obligated in prior years, O&M dollars generally get spent right away. In preparation for sequestration, the Pentagon has already let go of tens of thousands of temporary hires and is drawing up a contingency plan for one-day-a-week furloughs. Deputy Secretary Ashton Carter says the unpaid furloughs would begin in April and continue through the remainder of the fiscal year if sequestration is not avoided.
The Defense Finance and Accounting Service will implement significant cost-cutting measures next week to prepare for the possibility of automatic spending cuts due to hit government in March. DFAS plans to freeze most hiring, reduce travel and overtime, and temporarily halt new employee performance awards, according to DFAS Director Terri McKay.
The Army has put an immediate freeze on civilian hiring and will begin terminating some temporary employees to reduce spending ahead of potential across-the-board budget cuts later this year. Army Chief of Staff Ray Odierno and Army Secretary John McHugh also directed Army commanders and supervisors to reduce base-operations support spending.
Robert Work, the undersecretary of the Navy, says forget about the Reagan-era aspirations of a 600-ship fleet. Even with a smaller Navy, things are better than ever, he says, even if they're about to get worse due to smaller budgets and the threat of sequestration. "Yes, things might get worse. In fact, they probably will get worse. But this is the heyday of the U.S. Navy. And, if you're not excited, you ain't breathing," he said at the Surface Navy Association's annual symposium this week.
The nation's top military leaders warned Congress in unusually stark terms that its failure to pass a 2013 defense budget - coupled with the threat of automatic budget cuts - has pushed the Pentagon to the brink of a crisis.