350 civilian employees of Shaw AFB return to work

10/08/2013 8:31 PM

10/08/2013 8:34 PM

The 350 civilians employed at Shaw Air Force Base returned to work Tuesday.

“I can’t speak for the entire base, but it’s been nice having civilians back in our office,” said 2nd Lt. Earon Brown, deputy chief of public affairs for the 20th Fighter Wing. “I appreciate people being understanding during the reduction of services.”

The men and women considered “nonessential to the base’s defense mission” have been sent home during the Washington shutdown because of a lack of appropriated funds, according to a previous Item article. This meant some areas, such as the commissary and the customer service desk, were closed. Other sections, such as the Family Readiness Center, had to offer “limited services because only two military personnel are on site without their civilian counterparts,” stated the article.

The next big question is the pay.

“As of right now, what is being proposed under the Ensuring Pay for Our Military Act and what is expected is everyone will get paid through September 30 and the hours worked starting October 7 and onward on schedule once actually full appropriation is given,” Brown said Tuesday afternoon.

Civilians furloughed the first week of October but considered “central to the requirements and operations” of the base — or basically those working but not getting paid — will “probably be paid for their work,” he said.

“As of right now, there is no appropriation, and this is all proposed,” Brown said. “We’re back to business for the most part. Now it’s just the pay that is somewhat uncertain.”

Temporary duty assignments and permanent change of stations are still on hold, though, he said.

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