Aviation and Defense Cuts may mean lost jobs

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MolaKule

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UPDATE 1-Defense firms may issue layoff warnings despite US guidance inShare0 * Pratt & Whitney, Lockheed consider warnings on job cuts * Shareholder, employee concerns trump Labor Department guidance By David Lawder JUPITER, Florida, Aug 8 (Reuters) - U.S. defense contractors facing automatic budget cuts at the year-end are still considering issuing layoff notices to employees just before the Nov. 6 elections, even though the Obama administration says such warnings are unnecessary. David Hess, president of aircraft engine maker Pratt & Whitney, told Reuters on Wednesday the company was still examining its legal obligations regarding notification of employees who could be put out of jobs in January. At issue are some $55 billion in automatic spending cuts for fiscal 2013 that are due to hit on Jan. 2 and which could cost the defense industry thousands of jobs. Hess and other aerospace industry executives are mounting a campaign to persuade Congress to stop them. In a controversial move last week, the U.S. Labor Department said the circumstances surrounding the planned cuts were too uncertain to require defense and other federal contractors to comply with the provisions the so-called WARN Act, which requires employees to be notified 60 days before major layoffs or plant closures. Republican lawmakers immediately accused the Obama administration of trying to suppress potentially damaging notices of layoffs just before the election. "Right now the WARN Act is the law, and we always comply with the law, so we're not quite sure we understand the direction from the Department of Labor," Hess told Reuters at a rally for employees at Pratt & Whitney's jet engine test facility and rocket engine plant near West Palm Beach, Florida. The cuts in January stem from an August 2011 congressional budget deal to avoid a historic default on U.S. Treasury debt. Congress pledged to find $1.2 trillion in additional spending cuts by the end of 2012, or they would happen automatically, with half coming from defense spending. Although defense firms have warned that some $500 billion in cuts over 10 years will ultimately cause the loss of more than two million jobs countrywide, they have little clarity on how the Defense Department will parse out the pain starting in January. Pay and benefits for military personnel are exempt from the cuts, but executives are waiting to hear which weapons programs will be hit hardest. DETAILS DUE WITHIN 30 DAYS On Tuesday, President Barack Obama signed legislation requiring his administration to detail within 30 days how it will administer the cuts, which may help contractors decide where to cut. "We'll make a decision in the future as to whether or not we'll issue WARN notices. Some of it may depend on what clarity we get in 30 days," Hess said. Job cuts at Pratt & Whitney's U.S. operations could reach into the hundreds, Hess said. The Florida plant does development work on engines for the stealthy F-35 Joint Strike Fighter and builds rocket engines and has been under consideration for new investment to produce engines for exported F-35s. Should the cuts cause a reduction in the fighter jet's production rate, the company would have to re-evaluate its expansion plans, Hess added. Tom Burbage, program integration manager for the F-35 at the plane's prime contractor, Lockheed Martin, said his firm "appreciates" and will analyze the Labor Department guidance, but management must first answer to shareholders and employees. "The Labor Department is not a major shareholder in corporations like Lockheed Martin or (Pratt & Whitney parent)United Technologies," Burbage said. "Generally speaking, if we know there's a potential to have a major reduction in the future, we have to take appropriate action," he said. "All we are trying to do is be transparent with our employees so that nobody is caught by surprise." Lawmakers from both parties say they oppose the across-the-board cuts that will hit in January as a result of a budget deal made a year ago, but they have not been able to agree on alternative ways to reduce spending. Congress is on a five-week recess and when it returns in September, it will have only 11 legislative days to try to broker a deal before the November election. With both parties dug into partisan positions on budget and spending issues, a resolution is not likely until a post-election "lame duck" session of Congress that will be crowded with other fiscal deadlines.
 
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Sad, but about time. Cuts need to happen here...too much "unknown" spending... Time to invest more in the private sector, less on the government side....
 
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Nothing new, our country is broke. They have to cut spending on the military. P&W is down the road for me. Pandering by politicians won't save jobs.
 
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Originally Posted By: rshaw125
Originally Posted By: daves87rs
Originally Posted By: Trav
In before the lock
+1
Most pointless post
I forgot to add it to the post before, and the labtop I'm on has issues I'm fixing... So sue me.. smirk grin
 
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What I hate to see is when a congressman or senator adds to a spending bill to build jets or boats or whatever in his home state when the DoD doesn't want them. Or as many. Or they are old models. This happens all the time. I am all for American jobs building stuff the military needs but not just for the sake of jobs. Voters in his home state think he did a great job bringing some jobs to their state. But who is paying the bill??
 
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We can't afford to lose this infrastructure. The technology for the next series of airliners for example comes from the military projects we work on now. Better to hand it out to the free riders among us some think. Wrong.
 
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Made it in. I have a simple question while the DOD budget was a higher percentage of the Federal Budget during the Cold War how was it balanced? I have no problems cutting spending and it needed to be done yesterday. But making a bigger mess out of Aerospace and the DOD is not the most prudent course of action. IMO.
 

AVB

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They need to control the waste. I worked for the DON for almost 7 years, I was a permanent civil service employee. I was proud of what I did for the first year or two, but after seeing how things work and the waste I didn't want anything to do with it. Things like having a budget surplus at the end of the year then buying what ever they can to use the money so that it won't be cut from the next year's budget. Not being able to buy parts because you are out of money for the month or they let you keep getting parts on credit and you are out of money the second week of the next month, or the parts contractor hasn't been paid for 3 months so he cut us off. If there is any money left at the end of the month it doesn't roll over to the next month. Buying equiptment there is no service network for, so when it breaks down we have to buy the parts and fix it ourselves. The manufacturer provided us with training and certified us to do warranty work and be reinbursed for the cost but the government couldn't accept the payment. Paying two men full time to do a job that only required one certified inspector and a helper two months out of the year. Truck drivers with nothing to do during regular work hours, but have to work overtime because they are actually needed after hours. Supervisors and Branch Heads that have never worked in the real world and all they know is the government way. When the government shut down last spring I decided I was going to have my own business by the end of the year, and in January I resigned and went to work full time in my own shop.
 
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Originally Posted By: dave1251
Made it in. I have a simple question while the DOD budget was a higher percentage of the Federal Budget during the Cold War how was it balanced?
Cold war cost a lot less than having two actual wars, plus the economy bail out, plus 99 weeks of umemployment, plus 100% increase in welfare cost, etc....
 

Astro14

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Originally Posted By: azsynthetic
Originally Posted By: dave1251
Made it in. I have a simple question while the DOD budget was a higher percentage of the Federal Budget during the Cold War how was it balanced?
Cold war cost a lot less than having two actual wars, plus the economy bail out, plus 99 weeks of umemployment, plus 100% increase in welfare cost, etc....
IF I can stick to arithmetic, and not sound political, the Cold War was less expensive, but only slightly... Adjusted for inflation, we spend the same per capita now that we did during the cold war era...we spend far less as a percentage of federal budget (we are at about 20%, near the historic lows of the mid 90s, when DOD was at 18% of federal budget, and far below the 70% of budget that DOD consumed during Korea...)...and we are spending a slightly higher percentage of GDP....we are currently spending near level of the Reagan build-up as a % of GDP...well below the highs in %GDP spending that happened during other wars in history... OCO (wars) are very expensive. But, even were we to return to the lowest defense budgets we have ever had (and get rid of OCO), say, the inflation-adjusted $400B of the late 90s (same as the 60s prior to Vietnam), we would save on the order of $300B. Our current Federal Deficit is $1.5T, that's $1,500B...so, the "peace dividend" of returning to historic lows in spending, saving roughly $300B, would not get us anywhere close to a balanced budget. In fact, if we were to eliminate the DOD completely (not that I am advocating that course), we would still be $800 Billion in the hole. Every year.
 

OVERKILL

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The cuts in January stem from an August 2011 congressional budget deal to avoid a historic default on U.S. Treasury debt. Congress pledged to find $1.2 trillion in additional spending cuts by the end of 2012, or they would happen automatically, with half coming from defense spending. Although defense firms have warned that some $500 billion in cuts over 10 years will ultimately cause the loss of more than two million jobs countrywide, they have little clarity on how the Defense Department will parse out the pain starting in January.
Not only is the 500 billion in cuts concerning, but the 2 MILLION JOBS!!!????????? HOLY [censored]! That's only going to make things worse, having 2 million fewer tax payers. What kind of brain dead pylons are running this gong show?
 
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What kind of brain dead pylons are running this gong show?
The same architects of failure that don't want the cuts published until after the election.
 
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Perhaps the same idjits who haven't had a budget in almost 4 years? This is no longer a partisan issue. We need some action soon.
 
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Since Canada has a booming economy maybe those 2 million people can find much better jobs up North with free healthcare and no worries.
 
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