The Richmond Register

Local News

March 27, 2013

Sequestration furloughs pushed back two weeks at Army depot

(Continued)

MADISON COUNTY —

Effects on depot chemical weapons agencies

Blue Grass Chemical Activity is a tenant organization at BGAD that oversees the safe and secure storage of 523 tons of chemical weapons at the site.

The furloughs will affect 119 civilian employees with Blue Grass Chemical Activity, according to Chasity Pearson, its public affairs officer. Military soldiers also are part of the personnel, but they will not be required to take furloughs.

“The No. 1 priority still remains the safety of the chemical stockpile,” Pearson said.

Because employees typically work 10-hour shifts, four days a week, the chemical activity organization has a plan for a “staggered work schedule,” Pearson said. She explained some people would work Monday through Wednesday and others Tuesday through Thursday, for example.

The Assembled Chemical Weapons Alternatives, or ACWA, has the least number of workers that would be required to take furloughs. Twenty-nine civilian DoD workers are currently part of ACWA, according to Public Affairs Officer Stephanie Parrett.

ACWA is in charge of constructing and eventually destroying the chemical weapon stockpile. The majority of workers on the project are civilian contractors.

The plant construction is currently 65 percent complete, and destruction of the stockpile will commence in 2018 with a target completion date in 2021.

Parrett said the furloughs, if enacted, will not affect the overall timetable for the ACWA project at Blue Grass Army Depot.

Sarah Hogsed can be reached at shogsed@richmondregister.com or 624-6694.

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