Several months into federal sequestration budget cuts, some of the most severe reductions are just now taking effect.
Washington U.S. Senator Patty Murray made an urgent appeal on the floor of the Senate Thursday to get Republican members to, at the very least, allow discussions on a possible budget compromise.
Murray and other Democrats in the Senate say some Republicans have been dragging their feet in the process. And that, she says, is impacting the lives of thousands of federal and civilian employees as the sequestration reductions move into high gear this week.
The Senator said in Washington, veterans and civilians Friday will really feel the pinch, especially at Joint Base Lewis McChord.
“The 911 call center and the fire department will be understaffed," Murray said. "Air fields are going to be shuttered, except for emergencies. The military personnel office is closed. The substance abuse center is closed. And the Army Medical Center is going to close clinics. Even the wound-care clinic is going to be understaffed.”
Across the way, at Madigan Army Medical Center, some of the furloughs began Monday. Officials did that in order to spread out the days-off among employees. The affected workers there will lose 20 percent of their pay over 11 weeks of mandatory furloughs.
Copyright 2013 KUOW