published Friday, October 11th, 2013

Tennessee Labor Department forced to furlough staff over federal shutdown

NASHVILLE — Tennessee’s Department of Labor and Workforce Development is being forced to furlough 369 of their own workers due to the partial federal government shutdown, an official said today.

Twenty-seven employees were furloughed Wednesday while 342 will temporarily lose their jobs beginning Monday until the budget impasse between President Barack Obama and congressional Republicans will be resolved.

The Department of Human Services also is sending 112 of its employees home beginning Monday.

“The state is going to continue to operate programs and services over which we have control,” state Labor and Workforce Development Jeff Hentschel said in an email late this afternoon.

“However,” Hentschel said, “the Department of Labor and Workforce Development is approximately 79% federally funded, which has prompted immediate action to sustain operations.”

Most programs have “exhausted their carryover funds from the previous year prompting furloughs to begin” Monday.

Only two divisions that receive federal funding are not impacted. Those are Adult Education and Workforce Services, including the Career Center system.

about Andy Sher...

Andy Sher is a Nashville-based staff writer covering Tennessee state government and politics for the Times Free Press. A Washington correspondent from 1999-2005 for the Times Free Press, Andy previously headed up state Capitol coverage for The Chattanooga Times, worked as a state Capitol reporter for The Nashville Banner and was a contributor to The Tennessee Journal, among other publications. Andy worked for 17 years at The Chattanooga Times covering police, health care, county government, ...

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