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Potential Shutdown Could Affect Fairborn Businesses
UPDATE: Congress misses midnight deadline for blocking partial government shutdown, 1st in 17 years.
WPAFB -- In the Miami Valley, a partial government shutdown would mean mandatory furloughs for 8,700 workers at Wright-Patterson Air Force Base.
During the furlough, those workers won't get paid and will probably stop spending money at local businesses, like Tickets Pub, a popular spot with Fairborn locals and many Wright-Patt employees.
"If it happens tomorrow or the next day, I think most people will ride it out, go home, ride the Internet and tell their Congressman to fix this," said Fairborn business owner Doug Fannin.
"A lot of people who work at Wright-Patt commute from outlying areas. So if they're off work they're not going to come into Fairborn and spend money or Riverside or places that border the base. So I think it's going to have a huge impact on them," agreed Danny Tipton, a regular customer at Tickets Pub.
Furloughed workers will not be paid. It's unclear if they will get back-pay when the shutdown is over. Wright-Patt's commander, Col. Cassie Barlow, says the furloughs on base will result in $5 million a day in lost wages.
"It's tough watching what's going on in our government right now," Barlow said.
Employees considered to be essential are not facing furloughs. Firefighters, security forces, and some medical personnel at Wright-Patt will continue getting paychecks. And before long, the commander is hoping work on base will be back to businesses as usual.
"We have to think about what's after this. We have to think about the bigger picture. Sometimes it's hard to see the forest through the trees but that's what we really try to focus on during these times," Barlow said.
The Air Force Museum will be close, beginning Tuesday, and this weekend's scheduled Aero Carnival will be canceled.
WPAFB -- The clock is ticking and Congress' claws are out. It's a shutdown showdown, with just six hours to go and little movement on Capitol Hill.
Congress is still hammering out the details, but so far, no deal. House Speaker John Boehner indicated he wouldn't budge when it came to tying the government spending bill to Obamacare.
At Wright-Patt, all eyes are focused on Washington, D.C.
About 8,700 civil services employees at Wright-Patt will not get a paycheck, indefinitely, if Congress can't come to an agreement on how to fund the government.
If the partial government shutdown occurs at midnight Monday, non-essential workers at Wright-Patt will have to show up for work Tuesday, only to be given a furlough letter saying they have to go home, and not come back to work until further notice.
Those 8,700 workers will not be paid during the shutdown, and it's unclear if they will get back-pay once the mandatory furloughs are lifted. Wright-Patt's commander, Col. Cassie Barlow, says the furloughs on base will result in $5 million a day in lost wages.
"People are pretty frustrated. We talk to them about the value of what they do for the Department of Defense and it's really difficult in the same sentence to talk about the potential of furlough," said Col. Cassie Barlow, 88th Air Base Wing Commander.
Employees considered essential will not be furloughed, like firefighters, security forces and some medical personnel.
All military employees will still be working on base as well.
If the furloughs last through the end of the week, the Aero Carnival scheduled for this weekend will be canceled.
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