Sequester Impact on NDNG | VideoRetha Colclasure | 3/1/2013
You can`t tell the difference between military technicians and active Guard and Reserve members. Both wear the uniform. But only one will be affected by sequestration.
"They`re the ones that take care of the helicopters, do the maintenance in our vehicles. When it comes to domestic response, it`ll be impacted," said Brig. Gen. Alan Dohrmann with the North Dakota National Guard.
About 607 technicians in the North Dakota National Guard could be furloughed for 22 days between the end of April and the first of October.
It`s a $2.5 million savings, but it will cost those technicians 20-percent of their pay.
"In Bismarck, over 250 folks getting 20 percent less pay, they`re members of this community. They may not go out to eat as much. May defer buying a new car. It would have a huge impact on them personally," Dohrmann said.
And it would have a huge impact on the Guard`s readiness.Dohrmann says the technicians are the ones who keep equipment ready when it`s needed most.
"This is serious stuff. From a domestic standpoint, if there is a flood in the Red River Valley this spring, we will be there, that`s state active duty. The impact of sequestration is it may take longer for us to get out of the gate to get to where we need to go."
Less equipment may be kept up to standard, as well. Dorhmann says the rest of the needed cuts will be made up by parking some helicopters and not keeping them ready to respond. Other cuts are smaller, like looking at energy conservation and looking at potential cuts to programs the Guard offers for families.
Dohrmann says some areas can`t, and won`t, be cut. He says programs to support veterans will be protected.