Deputy Defense Secretary William Lynn III issued final guidance to the DoD workforce Thursday afternoon as a possible government shutdown approaches, confirming much of the speculation that has hovered over the issue for the past several days.
Lynn said the department remains hopeful that a shutdown can be avoided. “However,” he is quoted in a Pentagon press release, “prudent management requires that we plan for an orderly shutdown should Congress be unable to pass a funding bill before our current funding expires April 8.”
Lynn’s directive includes a number of issues relevant to workers at Robins Air Force Base and for defense contractors and military retirees in the Middle Georgia region:
- Military personnel are not subject to furlough and will report as normal during
- Members of the reserves should consult their chain of command for
- Civilian employees will be briefed by their supervisors on Friday to learn if
they are classified as excepted or non-excepted.
- Civilian workers in non-excepted status and not needed to perform excepted
duties will be furloughed in non-pay status.
- Furloughed workers may not telework or volunteer to work.
- Both military and civilian workers will receive pay for work performed prior to the shutdown.
- Pay for furloughed civilian workers will require separate congressional
- Military workers and civilians in excepted status who are required to work
during the shutdown will be paid retroactively once the department receives
- Military retirees and annuitants are not paid from appropriated funds and will
receive their benefits without interruption.
- Contractors working on contracts funded prior to the shutdown generally
may continue to work and will be paid, subject to further direction from the
Lynn said actions in support of national security, including operations in Iraq, Afghanistan, Japan and Libya, would continue.
“The department must also continue to provide for the safety of human life and protection of property,” he added.
To this point, Robins officials have not issued a statement regarding local impacts and how the Lynn directive will affect particularly the base’s heavily civilianized workforce.
Lynn indicated that inpatient and essential outpatient care in military medical facilities would continue along with emergency dental care. Also continuing would be non-appropriated fund activities such as childcare centers and base recreation outlets.