Sequester Finally Gets Real At Ft Campbell

Commissaries around the Department of Defense have limited hours because of sequestration. Credit: Defense Commissary Agency via Facebook

Commissaries around the Department of Defense have limited hours because of sequestration. Credit: Defense Commissary Agency via Facebook

The effects of federal budget sequestration are finally becoming reality at Fort Campbell. The post’s commissary – as an example – is now closed on Mondays “due to the furlough,” according to an automated message to callers.

Thousands of civilian employees are beginning to take their unpaid time off.

At the end of last week, Blanchfield Army Community Hospital was as quiet as it has been in a long time. Some 1,200 employees are now taking forced furloughs, leaving only a skeleton crew on Fridays through the end of September. Primary care services and psychologists have been exempted from the furloughs, but that still leaves pharmacies, labs and the radiology department idled.

The Fort Campbell school system – with its 5,000 students – has cancelled classes for five different Fridays and Mondays in August and September.

In all, 3,000 civilian employees are affected, each taking what amounts to a 20 percent pay cut for the next three months.

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