Sequestration Would Bring Serious, Negative Consequences for NC’s Military Bases & Economy
With little time left for Congress to act, I’m deeply concerned about the effects that sequestration would have on our state.
While reducing our national debt is one of my top priorities, indiscriminate, unprioritized cuts on the backs of our service members are not the way to get our fiscal house in order. The packs they carry and the burdens they’ve shouldered are heavy enough without the threat of sequestration.
Sequestration would have harmful effects on our armed forces by diminishing future military readiness and jeopardizing our country’s national security. It would also threaten our state’s fragile economic recovery.
More than 22,000 civilian employees in and around military bases like Fort Bragg, Camp Lejeune and Cherry Point would face $121 million in collective pay cuts. Earlier this week, I provided more details about these cuts in op-eds in the Fayetteville Observer and New Bern Sun-Journal.
Not only are these cuts damaging to the middle class families who will see less pay each month, but they’re also harmful for the spillover effect they will have on our local economies – the small businesses, grocery stores, dry cleaners who are just getting back on their feet.
Education and groundbreaking research funding that is an important part of our economy, especially in the Research Triangle, would be slashed as well. Specifically, I am concerned by $25.4 million in cuts to education that puts 350 teacher jobs at risk and put access to Head Start out of reach for 1,500 children. North Carolina would also lose out on $60 million in fudning for medical and scientific research.
The middle class should not keep paying the price when Washington can’t compromise and work together.
I will continue working with my colleagues on both sides of the aisle to stop these cuts and instead enact a balanced, responsible deficit reduction plan. We owe it to the men and women who have worn the uniform and sacrificed so much for our security.