House advances bill to provide back pay to furloughed workers

Online Staff Report

WASHINGTON, D.C. — Saturday, Oct. 5, the U.S. House of Representatives passed legislation 407-0 to guarantee back pay for federal workers who were furloughed as a result of the partial government shutdown.

Unless the bill is signed into law, roughly 800,000 federal workers will not receive back pay for the income they would have generated had the shutdown not occurred.

President Barack Obama has said he would sign the law if it makes it to his desk.

U.S. Rep. Adam Kinzinger, R-Ill., said Oct. 5: “Today, House Republicans and Democrats came together to ensure that hundreds of thousands of furloughed federal workers will receive the back pay they and their families so badly need. I call on Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid to immediately hold a vote on this bill. If we can all come together and agree on back pay for federal employees, surely there are other areas we can where we can begin finding solutions.”

U.S. Rep. Cheri Bustos, D-Ill., added: “Working families and small businesses across our region shouldn’t be punished because some in Washington have forced us into a government shutdown. I was proud to help lead this bipartisan effort to secure back pay for the dedicated men and women across our region, like those at the Rock Island Arsenal and the Peoria Air National Guard. Today’s bill would ensure that furloughed workers and their families won’t suffer at the hands of this reckless and irresponsible shutdown.”

The House also passed legislation that instructs the Secretary of Defense to allow furloughed military chaplains to perform religious services on property owned and maintained by the Department of Defense. Reports surfaced recently that religious services were not being performed on military grounds, though the chaplains were willing to perform the services.

Posted Oct. 7, 2013

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