Sunday, August 2, 2015

10 sequestration effects in Pa. and N.J.

The dire warnings about the federal spending cuts known as the sequester may have been over-hyped.

10 sequestration effects in Pa. and N.J.

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A protest against the federal budget cuts called sequestration was held at Independence National Historic Park on Wednesday by government workers, union members and other activists. (Matt Rourke / Associated Press)
A protest against the federal budget cuts called sequestration was held at Independence National Historic Park on Wednesday by government workers, union members and other activists. (Matt Rourke / Associated Press)

The dire warnings about the federal spending cuts known as the sequester may have been over-hyped.

But that doesn't mean local government agencies haven't seen cuts since the sequester went into effect last month. The Huffington Post compiled a list of 100 effects of sequestration around the country. Here, we break out the six Pennsylvania and New Jersey items from HuffPo's list, plus a few more effects that list didn't mention.

1. In the Lehigh Valley, Community Services for Children is warning that 100 children could lose their place in the Head Start program. 

2. The Erie County Department of Human Services says it will likely have to cut programs and services after losing $1.9 to $2.7 in federal funds in the 2013-2014 fiscal year.

3. The National Park Service is cutting the hours the public can see the Flight 93 National Memorial near Somerset. The memorial will start using its summer hours in May, instead of April, and will likely hire fewer seasonal staffers.

4. Loyalsock Township in Lycoming County will make fewer curbs handicap-accessible because the township expects to receive less money from Community Development Block Grant funds.

5. The Head Start Community Program of Morris County says it may turn away 17 to 34 children because of a loss in funding. Five teacher positions are also at risk of being cut.

6. Jobless people nationwide will see a 10.7-percent cut in their unemployment benefits. That will affect 99,000 people in Pennsylvania and 95,000 in New Jersey.

7. The Federal Aviation Administration will close air-traffic-control towers in Trenton, Harrisburg, Latrobe and Lancaster.

8. The Philadelphia Housing Authority laid off 82 employees because of the federal cuts.

9. The Benjamin Franklin Museum is slated to reopen later than planned this summer. But the museum had originially not expected to be able to hire enough staff to open at all.

10. Independence Hall and the Liberty Bell Center are eliminating evening summer hours for the attractions.

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