Local News

Sep 24, 2013 3:52 PM by Sara Donchey

CCAD Workers Concerned About Possible Government Shutdown

One of the larest industrial employers in South Texas may have to send more than half its workforce home next week.

And it all depends on whether or not the United States Goverment can pass a budget.

CCAD employee and union representative James Vaughn explained that his coworkers still have a lot of questions about the possibility of a government shutdown could affect them.

"Mainly people have been asking me questions about if it's going to happen or when it's going to happen," said Vaughn. "And if it happens, it happens on Oct. 1. They would notify us Monday if we [have to] go home."

Since CCAD workers are federal employees, a government shutdown could mean a work stoppage for non-essential employees.

That may add up to as many as two weeks without pay for some workers.

As of right now, the threat of a government shutdown is still only a threat, but for workers like Jesse Cisneros, their concerns are very real.

"People are paying attention to this," Cisneros said. "A lot of people are very upset with Congress and that they cannot seem to work out a budget in place."

Cisneros repairs Blackhawk helicopters. He is listed as a "non-essential" worker, and he would likely be sent home without pay if the government shuts down.

Less than a quarter of workers deemed "essential" would be required to stay at work, and they may also feel the effects, as their paychecks could come late.

"There will be a ripple effect--there's no doubt about that," said Cisneros. "Any time you have a slow down in the chain of supply there's always a ripple effect. If you don't have the necessary equipment that's called for, it takes a little longer to get it out to them and that consequently endangers our military as a whole."

Cisneros says the looming shutdown has him and his colleagues on pins and needles.

He explained that depot workers are still fighting to be refunded for money witheld from their paychecks during furloughs mandated over the last few years.

For now though, all depot workers can do is wait--and hope that a budget is passed.


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