AP sources: Pentagon likely to cut civilian furlough days

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Associated Press & 13News Now

Posted on July 30, 2013 at 1:27 PM

Updated Wednesday, Jul 31 at 4:00 PM

WASHINGTON (AP) — Defense officials tell The Associated Press that department civilians will likely face up to five fewer unpaid furlough days than originally planned, as Pentagon leaders scrimp to find up to $900 million in savings in the final months of the budget year that ends Sept. 30.  

The officials say no final decisions have been made, but they believe civilian workers will take six to eight unpaid days off rather than 11. The officials spoke on condition of anonymity because they were not authorized to discuss the matter publicly.

They cautioned that the savings are for this year and won't affect likely budget cuts in 2014.

About 650,000 department civilians have been taking one furlough day each week since early July. The furloughs were expected to save roughly $2 billion.

On Tuesday, Navy Lt. Cmdr. Nate Christensen said, "No decisions have been made at this time."

The furloughs began July 8.

Christensen said that most employees now have taken four unpaid days or will have by the end of the week.

The Pentagon said the furloughs will save around $2 billion this fiscal year.

When furloughs were first discussed, the Pentagon had considered the workers would have to be off 22 days.

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