Rock Island Arsenal Workers Notified Of Job Cuts - News and Weather For The Quad Cities -

Rock Island Arsenal Workers Notified Of Job Cuts

Updated:

Sequestration taking effect on employees at the Rock Island Arsenal; 175 Arsenal employees are being let go. Some were given termination notices; others are already out the door. 

This affects civilian workers all over Arsenal Island, including at the Garrison and the Joint Manufacturing and Technology Center. 

Of those 175 employees, 44 are temporary workers and 131 are term workers who will work until their terms run out. 

Most are being let go because of sequestration, but some were already planned because of an expected decrease in work.  

This news comes after furlough days announced for workers, and early retirement offered to 200 JMTC employees.

"Every day we get some different news," AFGE Local 15 President Steve Beck says. 

News of sequestration and its impact is creating uncertainty for many Arsenal workers. 

"News keeps breaking all the time, we're just curious as to when we're going to get some stability and things will get back to normal," Beck says. 

The latest comes as 175 civilian employees are being let go from different commands on the island, leaving the employees left to pick up the work load.  

"Little by little, we'll start to feel the impact of it," Beck says. 

 This combined with 14 furlough days for employees expected to kick in later this year. 

"We'll have fewer days to the job and fewer employees to do the job," Beck says, "Work will either be delayed, or it won't be done for a period of time." 

With furlough days and jobs lost, it could have a big impact on the QC. 

"That still translates to that $25 million dollars in lost wages, so that money will not be flowing into the local economy," Beck says. 

Union reps say higher-ups have been communicating what they can as they deal with sequester. 

"Information is coming out day by day, they're doing their best to share that with the employees," Beck says. 

Arsenal officials today released this statement:  

"The Arsenal is in the midst of a storm of fiscal constraints that could affect our readiness, our soldiers, their families, our DA civilians, and could potentially impact our local Quad City community... The tenant commands at Rock Island Arsenal have diverse plans for addressing the release of temporary and term employees. All share the goal of maintaining the mission of the arsenal locally, and the worldwide missions of its tenant commands."    

Both officials and employees say they are adjusting with each change that comes their way.  

"It's just one of the realities of the situation, we're going to have to pick up the slack," Beck says.

Earlier story:

Dozens of workers on the Rock Island Arsenal are losing their jobs. A spokesman confirmed that 44 temporary employees and 131 term employees from different commands on the Arsenal will be terminated as their terms end throughout the year, a process that began several months ago.

Most of the job losses are due to automatic federal budget cuts, but some were already planned due to the declining post-war workload. This is on top of early retirement incentives being offered to about 200 Joint Manufacturing & Technology Command workers announced earlier this year.

Click here to read a joint statement from the major commands on Arsenal Island.

At 5 & 6, KWQC-TV talks to a union representative about how the job cuts will impact the jobs of those who remain.