In other news:
– 800000 Pentagon staff face unpaid leave (Financial Times, Feb 20, 2013):
The “vast majority” of the Pentagon’s civilian personnel will be put on temporary unpaid leave if automatic spending cuts take effect on March 1, leaving 800,000 workers without pay for one day a week for more than five months.
In a letter to all US defence department employees, defence secretary Leon Panetta warned of “a serious erosion of readiness across our force” that would occur under sequestration – budget cuts worth $1.2tn over a decade under which military spending will take a big hit.
But Mr Panetta also said he was “deeply concerned” about the fate of Pentagon staff and their families. “We are doing everything possible to limit the worst effects on DoD personnel – but I regret that our flexibility within the law is extremely limited,” Mr Panetta said. Military personnel will be exempt from the automatic cuts, but civilians will be affected – and beginning in April will be subject to a one day per week furlough for 22 weeks. Mr Panetta said employees would be given 30 days’ notice before the furloughs.
– Pentagon awash in pink slips, preparing 800000 civilian furloughs (Washington Times, Feb 20, 2013)
US Defense Secretary Leon Panetta. (File photo)
– Pentagon to place 800,000 civilian workers on unpaid leave: Leon Panetta (PressTV, Feb 20, 2013):
The US Department of Defense (DOD) announced that 800,000 civilian employees are to be placed on unpaid leave if across-the-board budgets cuts take effect in March.
US Defense Secretary Leon Panetta told Congress on Wednesday that the Pentagon is to place nearly a million civilian defense employees on unpaid leave as congressionally mandated budget cuts worth USD 46 billion start on March 1.