ERDC to furlough more than 1,000 workers due to federal sequester

VICKSBURG — About 1,050 employees at the U.S. Army Engineer Research and Development Center in Vicksburg and three other locations expect to be furloughed one day a week beginning July 8 through Sept. 30.

“Approximately 60 percent of the ERDC workforce is subject to furlough,” ERDC assistant director Alice Duke said in an email to the Vicksburg Post.

“ERDC, in compliance with DOD guidance, is in the process of distributing furlough decision notices this week to employees who are subject to furlough and previously received furlough proposal notices,” she said.

The ERDC employs 1,170 people.

The furloughs are part of across-the-board federal budget reductions known as the sequester that went into effect on March 1.

The ERDC said furloughs generally will be scheduled for 16 hours per pay period, not to exceed 88 hours or 11 discontinuous work days.

Those not subject to being furloughed include employees deployed in a temporary duty or temporary change of station in a combat zone, employees funded under the National Intelligence Program and employees in civil works positions, the ERDC said.

Effects of automatic spending cuts in the federal budget at the Corps’ Mississippi Valley Division are expected to be minimal, as three of the division’s 80 employees are paid through the Department of Defense budget. The Vicksburg District office, which answers to the Division, is unaffected by furloughs because it is funded by civil works funds approved by Congress and is outside the DOD budget.

The unpaid days off are expected to save DOD about $1.8 billion.

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