PITTSBURGH (KDKA) — If there’s a government shutdown on Saturday morning, most federal workers will be told to stay home and they won’t get paid.
However, one important part of the federal government must report to duty, but they won’t get paid either, at least not right away.
At a time when tens of thousands of American troops are fighting wars overseas in Afghanistan and Iraq and enforcing a no-fly zone over Libya, it’s hard to imagine that a government shutdown means U.S. troops won’t get paid.
“I think it’s terrible. The military should be the first ones to get paid. They protect our country in service,” Retired Air Force Major Jim Hinnebusch said.
Air Force Guardsman Dan Yakich says a missed paycheck is really difficult for young military families.
“I think it’s going to be hard,” he said. “Everybody lives paycheck to paycheck, so I think it’s going to be very hard for everybody.”
Military personnel get paid on the 1st and 15th of each month. A shutdown on the 9th means half pay on April 15th and no pay on May 1st.
The working military will eventually get their back pay, but not until the shutdown is over.
One group certain to get paid during the shutdown – members of Congress. Despite a bill by Sen. Bob Casey to require a forfeiture of lawmakers’ pay, that bill is stalled.
There is a last-minute effort to allow the military to get full pay as scheduled.
Despite strong support, there’s no indication at this time that Congress will pass this bill that will allow the military to get their pay on time.