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Government Shutdown's Local Impact on WPAFB
WPAFB -- Now that a deal was reached in Washington, D.C., let's take a look at some of the affects those 16 days had on our local economy.
On October 1, about 8,600 people at Wright-Patterson Air Force Base received furloughs. Most of them were called back on October 7, but still without pay. There were a couple dozen non-essential employees that were not able to return until Thursday, now that the shutdown is over.
Workers tell us they are happy to finally see the shutdown end, but know that come next year, they could be doing the same old two-step yet again. It's that back-and-forth dance that keeps these workers and surrounding businesses on their heels.
Right now, though, the feeling is satisfaction.
"I'm thankful that it's over," said Marilyn Power of WPAFB.
"I'm glad it's over so people can get back to their normal lives," said Adrienne Clark of WPAFB.
But these workers fear that feeling won't last long.
"It's going to happen again," said Jim Mang of WPAFB.
After 16 days of a government shutdown, the countdown begins until January 15, the date the government is funded until.
"It's temporary, this is just a Band-Aid fix," said Mang. "We are going to go again and again. It's just a merry-go-round. It's a joke."
But it's no laughing matter for nearby businesses. AJ's Complete Auto Repair & Towing Inc workers say they've lost more than 90 percent of their business the last couple weeks.
"We went from a point of having 14 cars a day to having one car a day," said technician Phillip Reynolds. "People were scared to spend money because they did not know what was going on."
Business was so bad, in fact, they essentially had to go through their own furloughs.
"We rotate on who goes home that day, and when you have families to feed, it doesn't work very well," said Reynolds.
Wright-Patt employees should soon see a reimbursement for the days they missed, but not for these guys.
"They are not at work but they get a chance to get reimbursed, we don't get reimbursed we don't get a paycheck at that point," said Reynolds.
As far as the civil service employees, they still don't know if that back pay will come on next Friday's paycheck or not.
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