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Furlough Letters on Hold, Roller Coaster Continues
WRIGHT-PATTERSON AIR FORCE BASE -- According to an Air Force statement furlough letters are now on hold.
"Hopefully those furloughs won't happen," said Barry Chapman whose business is right across the street from the base. He is optimistic about today's news.
"At least they are prolonging it so people can keep going to work so that's a good thing."
"The department of defense is trying very hard to be able to buy down all of the furlough time, so that's the first choice, if we don't have to do this at all we'll all be very happy," said Col. Cassie Barlow, 88th Air Base Wing and Wright-Patterson AFB Installation Commander. "So we are waiting for that guidance and as soon as we are given that guidance we will either issue the furlough notices or you'll hear a big cheer from WPAFB that we're not going to have a furlough."
The furlough notifications were originally supposed to start at the beginning of March. At that point Thirteen-thousand government employees would have to go 22 days without pay.
Just before those notifications were supposed to come out , Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel announced the furloughs notifications would be delayed to May and the furloughs would begin in June. At that time they also decreased the number of days without pay to 14.
Monday, government employees were preparing to receive those notifications. Again at the last minute, Hagel announced the notifications have been put on hold. While some might say this delay is just a way to kick the can down the road, base officials are hoping to throw away the can all together.
"The first indicator was the reduction in the time from 22 days to 14 days," said Barlow. "I actually think it's a good sign that we are waiting for guidance. I think that means that people are working really hard to make it go away."
While the delays continue, so does the rumor mill.
"Honestly maybe they're postponing the furloughs because of the tensions with North Korea," said Fairborn resident Joe Anderson. "It's been kind of quiet and obviously you don't want to furlough somebody and have a day off in a week and then have something happen over there and have to call them back. You never know when we need all the personnel we can get."
Below is the official statement from OSD Public Affairs.
"As the (Defense) Secretary (Chuck Hagel) stated in congressional testimony mid-April, he is relooking (at) the number of furlough days that must be implemented. We expect to have the details soon, but no decisions have been made. At present, all civilian DoD employees, from all services, are subject to being furloughed. No final decisions regarding exemptions have been made."
Base Employees Prepare for Furlough Notices Going Out Monday
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