ROK Drop

Avatar of GI KoreaBy on March 1st, 2013 at 2:08 am

“Some Hard Times Ahead” for USFK and USFJ Government Civilian Employees

It is officially sequestration day:

The top U.S. military leader in Japan says sequestration could hit readiness for U.S. forces in the Pacific with fewer naval patrols and aircraft sorties, cuts to maintenance programs and less training with allies. Officials with U.S. Forces Korea also warned servicemembers on the peninsula this week that big changes are ahead there if the spending cuts go through.  (……)

Civilian defense employees in Japan have already been told they may be furloughed a day a week starting in April, and military leaders have warned that additional measures will also be needed.If the sequester goes ahead, component commands in Hawaii — U.S. Army Pacific, Marine Forces Pacific, U.S. Pacific Fleet, and Pacific Air Forces — will determine which areas must be cut, Angelella said. He expects to discuss the issue with their commanders during a video conference next week.

Department of Defense officials have also said the cuts could impact the military’s ability to respond to natural disasters.

Angelella, who spent the first months of his command here telling his troops to “institutionalize” lessons learned from U.S. military relief efforts following Japan’s March 2011 earthquake, tsunami and nuclear disaster, said his forces might have to “prioritize” if they respond to a future event.

The USFK commander also has warned that tough times may be ahead for many on the peninsula, but details remain unclear.

“I am deeply concerned about the potential direct impact of sequestration on our civilian workforce and their families,” Gen. James Thurman said in a statement posted this week on social media websites and sent to component commanders and senior enlisted leaders.

If sequestration continues for a substantial period, “The furlough will affect the majority of our civilian workforce with some exceptions,” Thurman said.

“USFK will work to ensure … if furloughs are executed, they are done in a consistent and appropriate manner.”

About 3,100 appropriated-fund Department of Defense employees are in South Korea. At a community town hall meeting Thursday for Area I — the northernmost region — U.S. Army Garrison-Red Cloud Commander Col. John M. Scott echoed Thurman’s sentiments, saying: “Some hard times ahead.”  [Stars & Stripes]

You can read more at the link, but taking a 20% pay cut for a few months is going to be a tough pill to swallow for the lower grade government civilians.

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  • Bobby Ray
    4:24 am on March 1st, 2013 1

    What the heck is wrong with people. This whole sequester deal is a cut of less than 3 percent of government spending. Even them departments who get cut 10 percent can easily suck it up. No this here is all hype to keep them inflated budgets. Everyone is screaming worst case and figuring out ways to minimise service and make it darn miserable for everyone but you can bet they will have money for fancy conferences and other wasteful things they will swear were already budgeted.

  • Glans
    4:52 am on March 1st, 2013 2

    Here’s a good overview of the sequester. Kevin Drum at Mother Jones, of course.

  • Obama's Speech Coach
    5:34 am on March 1st, 2013 3

    Liberals think any cut in the rate of growth is “draconian”. Glans and his buddy Kevin can bite me. They’re both asserting things that are not true.

  • Glans
    7:29 am on March 1st, 2013 4

    Coach, I appreciate your permission to bite you, but I respectfully decline. You tellin’ me the conservatives agreed to cuts that aren’t cuts? You’re confused.

  • Kingkitty
    8:18 am on March 1st, 2013 5

    As much money they are raking in it should not be an issue. Just one less day at the Juicy Bar.

    Many of these civilians one or two days off a week will not be missed since many of there jobs have no real purpose or these workers are off doing extra long lunches or mission which takes them to there houses or Osan shopping district.

  • Smokes
    11:56 am on March 1st, 2013 6

    #5 Wow looks like Tom snuck back in.

    Could you have possibly made a more assinine statement?

    “As much money they are raking in”

    How the F do you know how much anyone’s making in relation to their resonsibilities and workload to say anyone’s unfairly raking anything in?

    “Just one less day at the Juicy Bar”

    You seem to have DAC’s confused with contractors and enlisted cause those are the ones more often seen at a juicybar.

    “these workers are off doing extra long lunches or mission which takes them to there houses”

    Yeah let’s compare my 20m to sometimes non-existant lunch time to the average soldier’s of an hour and a half.

    It’s almost like you aren’t even a part of USFK or even in Korea at all. Do us all the favor and go the way of Tom because you’re not even making an effort to disguise your trolling.

  • Smoke7
    12:49 pm on March 1st, 2013 7

    #6 (and #5), yes, DA Civilians in Korea, SEVERAL, not all….take extremely LONG LUNCHES and LEAVE WORK EARLY! How do I know? I USED TO BE ONE! And I continue to watch some of my old co-workers still LEAVE EARLY, and when they do come in, sit around in the office WITH NO MISSION! One even likes to take LOOONNNGGGG Lunches to go play the slots at various locations on post. So yes, some DA civilians will not be missed and are currently a waste of USFK budget money. Now as far as the comment about “Just one less day at the Juicy Bar”…why do you care where anyone goes during their time off and spends their money?? It isn’t any of your business and it won’t impact their weekend visits to any bars, trust me. As much money as the State Department pays them for housing, they won’t have any disruption in their daily life (unless they ran a poor budget in the first place and have alot of bills, oh well, their own fault!). Soldiers take just as much time away from the mission…go off post after 1 pm (lunch is over) and see just how many Soldiers are out shopping in uniform, in the Korean Barber Shops, in the restaurants with juicy girls…how do I know? Because dummy…I am NOT a DA civilian anymore so I (retired) have plenty of free time living on the Korean Economy with my Korean wife and see several Soldiers anytime I venture out during the day. Obviously thee is no military equipment to be worked on, otherwise thy’d be in the motorpool, no wait for it! They make the KATUSA’s do that, whom arent even licensed on the equipment in the first place! Now, how about the Congress take a 50% pay cut? Than we’d be talking cuz they aint doing their job anyway and its our own fault for voting them into office!

  • Ole Tanker
    2:53 pm on March 1st, 2013 8

    #5,6, and 7.

    It seems to be the general consensus that the furlough will not effect, much less hurt DAC’s overseas.

    Folks stateside are taking a pretty big hit. [Someday you all (DACS)will be there:)]

    A GS7 step 5 will see about $700 less per month.

    So all I can say is “Stay over seas as long as you can, while the getting is good, Every dog has it’s day, some get two.”

  • Denny
    9:23 pm on March 1st, 2013 9

    “This so-called sequester is only 7% of the bloated $700 billion a year defense budget. The purse-rattling and fear-mongering from our 1,000 uselesss flag officers has got to stop.”

  • Kingkitty
    2:41 am on March 3rd, 2013 10

    Smokes? Really

  • someotherguy
    12:17 am on March 4th, 2013 11


    Furlough’s are definitely effecting DAC’s in South Korea. They’ve been told they need to take 21 days each, spread out. They may opt to use accumulated leave time instead, otherwise their doing a 4 day work week or splitting shifts.

  • Leon LaPorte
    1:00 am on March 4th, 2013 12

    11. You are not allowed to take leave time to cover furlough days.


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