Military Furloughs in VA

Jul 29, 2013

Officials in Virginia are looking at just how sequestration cuts are impacting military operations in the Commonwealth.

But it can be difficult to gauge just how families are adjusting to their first reduced paychecks as a result of sequestration furloughs.

One commander at For Lee says his base is a ghost town on Fridays because furloughs forced the facility to shut down manned entrances. Another says he's in a similar situation but he's finally getting automated gates. Because installations in other states have had to reduce training, one commander at Fort AP Hill says his base has benefited from out of state troops coming to Virginia to train.

And even Terrie Suit, the state's Secretary of Veterans Affairs & Homeland Security says her military family has had to make some adjustments.

"We have an extraordinarily large number of civilian defense workers that are losing 20-percent of their pay over this compacted period of time, and many of them were not prepared for it. They had some advanced notice, it turned out they didn't have as many days that were furloughed but that doesn't really make it any better. Have we seen the impact? When you have something like that, it's a little more of a ripple effect," said Suit.

She adds that's when they expect to see revenues drop, people struggling to pay mortgages, rent, and car payments. But the overall impact will be immeasurable for several months. She says when folks finally do adjust, they'll likely then have to prepare for more defense reductions.