Staff Reporter-Dayton Business Journal

U.S. Rep. Mike Turner, R-Dayton, joined a group of lawmakers seeking to block the possibility of furloughs for defense employees next year.

Terming this year’s furloughs of U.S. Department of Defense workers “shameful,” Turner supported three amendments to the U.S. House of Representatives’ version of the $600 billion Defense budget for Fiscal Year 2014, which passed Wednesday. The amendments block 2014 Defense funding to plan for furloughs or a similar sequestration-type event for civilian DoD employees, Dual Status Military Technicians or federal employees paid from the Working Capital Fund Account revolving fund.

“Families have been severely impacted because the President and the Senate have refused to act on this issue,” Turner said in a statement. “Once again, the House has taken significant action to halt these furloughs for the coming Fiscal Year. The Senate should act immediately to include similar language in their appropriations bill, and stop the punishment of workers who are focused on our nation’s security.”

Roughly 14,000 people in the Dayton region have been hit by the furloughs of civilian workers related to sequestration as a result of Wright-Patterson Air Force Base, which employs 29,000 people and supports another 30,000 defense contractor jobs.

The impacted civilian workers must take a day off each week. Most civilian employees will have to take up to 11 days of furloughs beginning on July 8.

Originally, the furloughs were expected to last 22 days. If they had, they were expected to cut more than $111 million from Ohio’s economy in lost wages during the first six months after kicking in.

The Senate must also pass a bill for the defense budget.