The Richmond Register

July 3, 2013

Depot begins 11 weeks of partial furloughs Monday

By Seth Littrell
Register News Writer

MADISON COUNTY — The Blue Grass Army Depot will begin 11-weeks of partial furlough for most of its civilian workers on Monday.

The furloughs are designed to reduce payrolls by 20 percent during the period to comply with Congressionally mandated budget cuts known as sequestration.

Workers who had been working four 10-hour days a week will be working four 8-hour days, according to Mark Henry, depot public affairs officer.

He said the depot’s security personnel were exempted from the furlough, but the Army remains in negotiation with the depots emergency medical responders and firefighters about reducing their hours.

If depot firefighters’ hours are cut, it could affect the mutual aid agreement between the depot and local governments, said Jim Cox, Madison County Fire Chief. That could hinder their ability to assist the county or either of  the two cities in extreme emergencies, he said.

Henry said the depot still plans on honoring its half of the agreement, under which one fire department agrees to come to another's aid.

“We have a plan to maximize what resources we will have available,” Henry said. “The issue will be more with the number of people than the times they are available.”

This furlough is similar to others affecting most federal government agencies nationwide, according to an online Defense Department memorandum.

Seth Littrell can be reached at slittrell@richmondregister.com or 624-6623.