Decision on Ft. Sill furloughs delayed - KSWO 7News | Breaking News, Weather and Sports

Decision on Ft. Sill furloughs delayed

Fort Sill_Nearly 3,000 civilian employees on Fort Sill were expecting to get furlough notices from the Pentagon, starting Friday.

But, Thursday, the Department of Defense announced a delay of at least two weeks for sending the notices because of new developments in Congress. They want more time to see the stopgap spending plan approved Friday would affect the department's funds.

If nothing is resolved, a Pentagon spokesperson says officials are now estimating the notices will go out around April 5th.  Major General Mark McDonald, Post Commander, says each civilian employee would have to take 22 days of unpaid vacation. That's roughly a day per week through September.

"We're gonna have 20 percent less work force available to us, so it's gonna affect several things," said General McDonald.

One of the most noticeable would be customer service. McDonald says people would have longer waits at the pharmacy. The latest from the commissary is that it would close every Wednesday. The ID card employees make cards for nearly 80 people per day, so a day off means 80 fewer served per week.

"You're used to the military saying 'We're going to do more with less,' but this time, we're gonna have to do less with less."

Appointments will also slow down at the hospital, even though they plan to  keep the emergency room open 24 hours a day. As far as training goes, McDonald says they will stick to their core mission.

"To train basic combat training soldiers and our initial entry level soldiers. the ones that are getting their artillery skills, their air defense artillery skills, and our officer training..They will be fully trained before they deploy."

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