Thursday, April 7, 2011
Thousands of military members based in San Diego could go without pay temporarily if the looming shutdown of the federal government actually happens on Friday, federal officials said today.
The question isn't whether the sailors, Marines and airmen will be paid, but how much and when.
According to a statement on the Defense Department website, the armed forces members would continue to earn their salaries, but wouldn't actually receive any money until Congress reaches a budget agreement.
Because the Friday falls halfway within a pay period, service members could receive one week's pay, but the delay after that would be dependent on the length of the possible shutdown, according to The San Diego Union-Tribune.
Nearly 50,000 civilians are employed by the federal government in San Diego, and the large portion of them considered to be in essential positions would be expected to continue working.
President Barack Obama, House Speaker John Boehner, R-Ohio, and Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, D-Nev., met at the White House tonight in an attempt to reach an agreement to avoid a shutdown that would occur if both houses of Congress and Obama do not approve a new spending plan by Friday.
Obama described the meeting as productive and constructive.
"What they did was narrow the issues and clarify the issues that are still outstanding," Obama told reporters. "I remain confident that if we're serious about getting something done we should be able to complete a deal and get it passed and avert a shutdown."
Obama said he would speak with Boehner and Reid's staffs Thursday.
"If we haven't made progress, we're going to go back at it again," Obama said. "We're going to keep on pounding away at this thing because I'm absolutely convinced we can get this done."
Boehner said in February that the "Republicans goal is to cut spending and reduce the size of government, not shut it down."
The House Republican leadership introduced a continuing resolution Tuesday that would keep the federal government running for another week, funds the Department of Defense through September and cuts an additional $12 billion in spending.