DES MOINES (AP) — The federal government shut down will idle more than 1,000 full-time Iowa National Guard employees across the state and halt weekend training missions for thousands of soldiers, a spokesman said Monday.
Included in the idled employees are workers at the Iowa Air National Guard base at Des Moines International Airport, where about 350 full-time workers are assigned.
A large number of the 800 full-time workers at Camp Dodge in Johnston and 400 at the Joint Forces Headquarters nearby also will be affected. Others facing furloughs are assigned to armories across the state, said the Iowa National Guard spokesman, Col. Greg Hapgood.
The Iowa National Guard has about 2,200 full-time workers in Army and Air Force units.
“You'll see two things happen right away. A drastic number will be cut from work starting Oct 1. On our end it also will greatly curtail the amount of training that's done and the amount of facilities that are open,” Hapgood said.
The furloughs will affect those who are full-time federal government employees, some state workers reimbursed by the federal government and a few contract employees.
The National Guard also will be forced to cancel orders for supplies purchased under contract. That would include meals and other supplies for soldiers scheduled to undergo weekend training missions. More than 9,000 Iowa soldiers participate in weekend drills.
October is the beginning of a new training year and typically is a very busy month as soldiers complete tasks required once a year, including annual physical fitness qualifications.
“It could have a very adverse effect on us from a training standpoint if drills were canceled in October,” Hapgood said.
The federal government shutdown will have a minimal impact on state operations, Gov. Terry Branstad said. All state offices will remain open.
“We're going to do everything we can to minimize the impact in the state of Iowa,” he said Monday.
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