Congressman Garamendi Calls on Congress to Stop Civilian Furloughs at Military Bases
July 8, 2013
WASHINGTON, DC – Congressman John Garamendi (D-Fairfield, CA), a Member of the House Armed Services Committee, today called on Congress to end the civilian furloughs caused by sequestration that began today. He issued the following statement:
"Sequestration has faded from the public conversation, but it continues to place a drag on America’s economy and recovery. Beginning today, more than 650,000 civilians working for the Department of Defense begin unpaid furloughs that amount to a 20 percent pay cut."In addition to the heavy impact on families resulting from the loss of pay, these furloughs will result in a loss of efficiency and effectiveness in operations that are critical to our nation’s defense. They will also cause financial harm to communities with large military presences – like Fairfield and Yuba City. Moreover, it is simply unfair to focus so narrowly on public servants who are doing incredible work for our nation."I have voted multiple times to end sequestration and supported more than two trillion dollars in budget cuts. Today I once again call on Congress to put partisanship aside to stop the counterproductive unfocused cuts found in the sequester."
Travis Air Force Base has 1,507 civilian employees who are being furloughed. Beale Air Force Base has 551 civilians being furloughed.
Sequestration refers to the indiscriminate budget cuts to defense and non-defense spending, such as investments in early childhood education and medical research, which government agencies have been forced to implement since March 1st, 2013. Nonpartisan and bipartisan analysts have estimated that these cuts will lead to the loss of 750,000 American jobs.
Congressman Garamendi has voted several times to replace sequestration with a balanced plan to create jobs and responsibly reduce the deficit (votes #33, 41, 51, 59, 61, 83, and 87). He has also called for an end to sequestration in nearly a dozen press releases, in an op-ed, through online social media, on the Floor of the House of Representatives, in Committee hearings, and at community forums and Town Halls. He will continue to do everything he can to stop these mindless cuts, which disrupt the operation of Beale and Travis, make Northern California more susceptible to floods, harm the most vulnerable in our society, and hold back engines for growth including education, research, and infrastructure.