Air Reserve Station sets furlough days
Youngstown Air Reserve Station is scheduling “designated furlough days” on Mondays beginning July 15, as a result of the sequester-driven involuntary furloughs that began July 8. The Monday designated furlough days are scheduled to continue until August 26 with a designated furlough day also scheduled on Sept. 3, the Tuesday after Labor Day for a total of eight weeks.
The “designated furlough days” will save additional resources including lights, air conditioning, etc. However, during the designated furlough days, services usually available to Department of Defense (DoD) I.D. cardholders, such as I.D. card issue/renewal as well as access to the fitness center, Base Exchange, Community Activity Center and Retiree Activities Office will not be available.
“As much as we pride ourselves on providing these services to our Department of Defense brethren, this is something we will have to curtail as long as we are affected by furlough and sequester,” said Col. James Dignan, 910th Airlift Wing Commander.
The commander said Security and Fire assets will continue to provide resource protection on the “designated furlough days.”
The furloughs will affect more than 400 DoD civilian personnel assigned to YARS and cut the work week at the installation by one day for up to 11 weeks. In addition to the eight scheduled “designated furlough days,”
the 910th’s civilian employees will need to schedule additional “floating” furlough days. However, services will be available during the “floating” furlough days.
“The 910th will continue to carry out our airlift and aerial spray missions with the resources available to us. However, one non-working day per week for our affected personnel during the 11-week furlough will obviously impact mission readiness,” said Col. Dignan. “The sequester-driven furloughs strain our most important asset, our people. The civilian personnel here at YARS will suffer a 20 percent loss in pay that will cause hardship for many.
Additionally, this pay loss will likely mean a reduction in our economic impact on the local community during this fiscal year.”
“Civilian furloughs are a measure of last resort, and we deeply regret that the arbitrary across-the-board cuts imposed by sequestration led to this result,” said Eric K. Fanning, acting Secretary of the Air Force, in a letter sent via e-mail to the Airmen of the U.S. Air Force this week. “Despite standing down combat flying units, reducing space and mobility operations, reducing weapon system support, cutting installation support and facility repairs and cancelling most travel, training and exercises, we must still take this painful action.”
“While furloughs have real consequences for civilian Airmen, the reduction in productivity and capability resulting from this action will affect all Airmen,” continued Secretary Fanning. “We appreciate your professionalism in dealing with this situation and promise we will continue to work with DoD and Congress to seek repeal of sequestration and an end to the frustration and mission impact it causes.”