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Federal sequester's possible impact on Massachusetts

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SPRINGFIELD, MA (WSHM/CNN) -

With massive federal budget cuts looming, the White House has released what it calculates to be the impact of sequester cuts on Massachusetts.

  • Teachers and Schools: Massachusetts will lose approximately $13.9 million in funding for
    primary and secondary education, putting about 190 teacher and aide jobs at risk. In addition, about 20,000 fewer students would be served and approximately 60 fewer schools would receive funding.
  • Education for Children with Disabilities: In addition, Massachusetts will lose approximately $13.4 million in funds for about 160 teachers, aides and staff who help children with disabilities.
  • Work-Study Jobs: About 580 fewer low income students in Massachusetts would receive aid to help them finance the costs of college and about 800 fewer students will get work-study jobs that help them pay for college.
  • Head Start: Head Start and Early Head Start services would be eliminated for approximately 1,100 children in Massachusetts, reducing access to critical early education.
  • Protections for Clean Air and Clean Water: Massachusetts would lose about $4 million in environmental funding to ensure clean water and air quality, as well as prevent pollution from pesticides and hazardous waste. In addition, Massachusetts could lose another $472,000 in grants for fish and wildlife protection.
  • Military Readiness: In Massachusetts, approximately 7,000 civilian Department of Defense employees would be furloughed, reducing gross pay by about $43.4 million in total.
  • Army: Base operation funding would be cut by about $8 million in Massachusetts.
  • Air Force: Funding for Air Force operations in Massachusetts would be cut by about $5
    million.
  • Law Enforcement and Public Safety Funds for Crime Prevention and Prosecution:
    Massachusetts will lose about $300,000 in Justice Assistance Grants that support law enforcement, prosecution and courts, crime prevention and education, corrections and community corrections, drug treatment and enforcement and crime victim and witness initiatives.
  • Job Search Assistance to Help those in Massachusetts find Employment and Training:
    Massachusetts will lose about $787,000 in funding for job search assistance, referral and placement, meaning about 26,970 fewer people will get the help and skills they need to find employment.
  • Child Care: Up to 500 disadvantaged and vulnerable children could lose access to child care, which is also essential for working parents to hold down a job.
  • Vaccines for Children: In Massachusetts about 2,940 fewer children will receive vaccines for diseases such as measles, mumps, rubella, tetanus, whooping cough, influenza and Hepatitis B due to reduced funding for vaccinations of about $201,000.
  • Public Health: Massachusetts will lose approximately $625,000 in funds to help upgrade its ability to respond to public health threats including infectious diseases, natural disasters and biological, chemical, nuclear and radiological events. In addition, Massachusetts will lose about $1.7 million in grants to help prevent and treat substance abuse, resulting in about 5,200 fewer admissions to substance abuse programs. And the Massachusetts State Department of Public Health will lose about $367,000, resulting in about 9,200 fewer HIV tests.
  • STOP Violence Against Women Program: Massachusetts could lose up to $140,000 in funds that provide services to victims of domestic violence, resulting in up to 500 fewer victims being served.
  • Nutrition Assistance for Seniors: Massachusetts would lose approximately $535,000 in funds that provide meals for seniors.

(Source: White House sequester fact sheet)

Nearly 800,000 civilian workers nationwide would be forced to take one day of leave per week without pay if automatic spending cuts go into effect as scheduled.

The majority of the 759 civilian workers at Westover Air Reserve Base in Chicopee would be included in that number, according to base officials.

Westover commanders estimate the furloughs would also cut the base's local economic impact by 10 percent, or roughly $24 million. Westover put $238 million into the Western Massachusetts economy during 2012.

Furloughed workers could include office staff, aircraft and ship maintenance workers, teachers and medical staff. Defense Department civilian foreign employees would be exempted from pay cuts. Other employees exempted would include civilians working for the agency in combat zones and certain emergency and safety personnel.

Read the White House's entire fact sheet on the sequester's impact on the Bay State here:
http://www.whitehouse.gov/sites/default/files/docs/sequester-factsheets/Massachusetts.pdf

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