Furloughs expected in Huntsville as sequestration looms - WAFF-TV: News, Weather and Sports for Huntsville, AL

Furloughs expected in Huntsville as sequestration looms


Sequestration is looming, and thousands of furloughs are expected from Redstone Arsenal and Huntsville contractors.

The American Federation of Government Employees estimates as many as 70,000 people could be hit with salary reductions because of sequestration. The union cites more than 20,000 from Redstone Arsenal could be the first to be hit with furloughs. They say the plan is for employees to take a 20-percent cut in salary and hours for more than four months. AFGE also the negative economic impact is in hundreds of millions of dollars.

"Huntsville is a federal town," said WAFF 48 News political analyst Dr. Waymon Burke. "It operates on federal money, and if we are significantly cut it will impact our lifestyle."

Burke expects to see the impact hit gradually as politicians hold out on making a deal.

"The public is going to blame someone, whether it's the president or congress. We will see who will blink first," said Burke.

Questions have come up if Redstone Arsenal employees can avoid furloughs with paid time off or vacation days. Redstone Arsenal spokesperson, Dan O'Boyle, said that's not possible.

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