Pentagon delays civilian furlough notices

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The Pentagon has decided to delay issuance of its civilian furlough notices for about two weeks, after Congress passed a continuing resolution that will provide defense funding through the end of the fiscal.

“This delay will allow the department to carefully analyze the impact of pending continuing resolution legislation on the department’s resources,” Pentagon press secretary George Little said Thursday.

The Defense Department had planned to begin requiring its 800,000 civilian workers in late April to take one day of unpaid leave a week for 22 weeks because of budget constraints. The furlough notices were to have been sent to civilians this week and next.

“We have not made any decisions on whether or not the total number of planned furlough days for fiscal 2013 will change as a result of this delay,” Mr. Little said.

“We believe the delay is a responsible step to take in order to assure our civilian employees that we do not take lightly the prospect of furloughs and the resulting decrease in employee pay,” he said.

Automatic spending cuts that began March 1 had required the Pentagon to cut $46 billion from its budget by Sept. 30 and $500 billion over the next decade.

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