DoD

May 17, 2013

Hagel announces fewer furlough days for DOD employees

Tags:
Nick Simeone and Karen Parrish
American Forces Press Service

furlough
After weeks of review, Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel has concluded budget cuts will require most of the department’s civilian employees to be furloughed beginning in July, but that because of other efforts to deal with the shortfall, only half of the 22 days originally envisioned as temporary layoffs will now be necessary.

During a town hall meeting May 14 at the Mark Center in Alexandria, Va., Hagel told Defense Department employees that most will be required to take 11 furlough days beginning July 8, one per week, through the end of the fiscal year, Sept. 30.

In a statement, Secretary of the Air Force Michael Donley and Air Force Chief of Staff Gen. Mark Welsh III explained the service’s efforts to reduce impacts of sequestration on personnel, but furloughs will be unavoidable.

“While the Air Force and Department of Defense have made every effort to minimize impacts to readiness and people, the resource choices we have available are now very limited, and we’ve reached the point where we simply can’t avoid furloughs,” they said.

In a memo to senior department leaders, Hagel said he had “very reluctantly” concluded that major budgetary shortfalls triggered by a $37 billion cut in defense spending for fiscal 2013 forced a decision he said he deeply regrets, and one that he acknowledged will disrupt lives and impact DOD operations. However, he credited congressional passage of a defense appropriation bill in March in part for helping to reduce from the number of days civilians would be temporarily laid off by half.

It may be possible later in the year to “knock that back” to an even lower number, the secretary said, but he emphasized that he could not promise such an outcome.

“As Secretary Hagel stated, the Department of Defense will decide later this year whether our budgetary situation permits us to end furloughs early,” Donley and Welsh stated. “In the meantime, we will keep working to prevent actions which will further impact our people and Air Force missions.”

Hagel said the furloughs will affect every military department and almost every agency, with limited exceptions. “We will except civilians deployed to combat zones and civilians necessary to protect life and property,” he wrote in his memo, adding that others will be excepted if forcing them to stay off the job would not free up money for other needs.

Regardless of the exceptions, Donley and Welsh stressed how much the Air Force will be impacted due to the essential role that civilian Airmen play in ensuring a strong and ready force.

“Our civilian Airmen are critical to everything we do,” they said. “We simply could not be the world’s greatest Air Force without (the civilian Airmen). During this challenging time, we want you to know how much we appreciate your service. We also want you to know we will continue to look for every possible way to minimize furloughs and to prevent further any other actions that would affect you and your family in negative ways. Thank you for the great professionalism you continue to bring to the job every day. We’re proud to stand beside you.”

The Air Force’s top two leaders said they hoped furloughs could be avoided entirely, but they noted these unprecedented times have called for tough decisions.

“This is something we had hoped to avoid,” Donley and Welsh wrote.”We recognize the significant impact this action will have on our civilian Airmen, their families and our mission. But the unprecedented budget choices we’ve faced during this extraordinary year have forced painful decisions to avoid further degradation in our missions.”

Employees set to be furloughed will begin receiving written notification May 28 to June 5.




All of this week's top headlines to your email every Friday.


 
 

 

News Briefs August 21. 2015

Women’s Equality Day Luncheon Be sure to reserve your seat for the upcoming Womenís Equality Day Luncheon! The guest speaker is Juliana de Beers, owner of J.B. Whitney & Associates, who also teaches communication courses at Edwards. Additionally, Jon Ghent from Lockheed Martin will present a short speech on ìWomen in STEM.î Aug. 26 has...
 
 

Personnel Briefs August 21, 2015

Undergrad flying training applications due in November The 2016 Air Force Undergraduate Flying Training selection board will convene Jan. 25-28 to select applicants for 2016-2017 pilot, remotely piloted aircraft, combat systems officer and air battle manager training opportunities. Eligible active duty officers must apply by Nov. 20 and selection results will be released in February...
 
 
history-run

Run with History deadline Sept. 10

Edward’s AFB History Fact: Chuck Yeager broke the sound barrier Oct. 14, 1947, here at our very own Edwards AFB. He flew the X-1 at Mach 1.07 at an altitude of 45,000 ft. Most will know this fact, but did you know that tw...
 

 

Seed bugs invade Edwards

During the past weeks Edwards has once again fallen prey to Mother Nature’s hand and has been invaded by Melacoryphus lateralis — †the Seed bug. Misty Hailstone, 412th Civil Engineering Group, Environmental Management biologist, identified the species, which was confirmed by an entomologist. The Seed bug does not sting or bite and is not known...
 
 
Air Force photograph by Rebecca Amber

Annual orientation trains new key spouses

Air Force photograph by Rebecca Amber The Airman and Family Readiness Center hosted an annual Key Spouse Program Orientation Aug. 18 for newly appointed and returning Key Spouses. The Airman and Family Readiness Center hosted a...
 
 
Lockheed Martin photograph

JSF ITF reaches historic sortie milestone at lightning speed

Lockheed Martin photograph During the month of July, the Joint Strike Fighter Integrated Test Force flew 76 sorties, making it a first for the ITF involving a new monthly flying record. The Joint Strike Fighter Integrated Test ...
 




0 Comments


Be the first to comment!


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <s> <strike> <strong>