Automatic federal spending cuts go into effect Friday at midnight
Fri, 01 Mar 2013 17:21:02 GMT — Automatic federal spending cuts take effect Friday after lawmakers were unable to reach an agreement.President Barack Obama says it may take a couple of weeks or a couple of months to reach a deal to end Washington's battle over spending cuts.The president spoke after meeting with congressional leaders, that lasted less than an hour, at the White House on $85 billion in automatic spending cuts that go into effect Friday at midnight.Obama says the cuts are "dumb and arbitrary" and he blamed them on Republicans in Congress who he says refused to close `wasteful' loopholes for automatic budget cuts.The president says automatic budget cuts are `not a win for anybody. This is a loss for the American people.' The government's automatic spending cuts shouldn't delay tax refunds. Any furloughs at the Internal Revenue Service will be delayed until summer, after the tax filing season ends. The spending cuts are expected to cause furloughs for the vast majority of the Federal Aviation Administrationâ??s nearly 47,000 employees, including possibly eliminating overnight shifts at the air traffic control tower at Syracuse Hancock Airport.For now, Syracuse Aviation Commissioner Christina Callahan says it is business as usual. Callahan says she has not heard of any disruptions in service so far.The White House released a report on the impact the cuts will have on individual states.New York, the report says, will: lose $42.7 million in school funding, putting 590 jobs a risk; lose some Head Start services; lose more than $12 million in funding to ensure clean water and air quality; 12,000 civilian defense employees furloughed; lose about $780,000 in public safety and crime prevention funds; lose about $884,000 in funding for job search assistance; reduced funding for vaccinations, impacting about 7,170 children; lose up to $412,000 in domestic violence services; lose about $1,070,000 in public health funds; and lose about $1,447,000 in funds to provide meals for seniors.(Information from the Associated Press was used in this report.)
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