Congressman garners support to stop SRNS furloughs - WFXG FOX 54 - News Now

Congressman garners support to stop SRNS furloughs

AIKEN, SC (WFXG) -

Answering question after question, US Congressman Joe Wilson is garnering support from Savannah River Nuclear Solutions employees as he requests government funds be transferred to save workers from being furloughed.

"Many of these people are highly educated," Congressman Wilson said. "They'll be able to find jobs somewhere else in the United States. So we would lose talent and we would lose the capability of environmental cleanup, which is crucial to the people of South Carolina and Georgia."

More than 2,500 SRNS employees have already suffered 32-hour week furloughs. It's a result of the recent federal budget cuts taking effect earlier this year.

"The 32-week furloughs are already taking an effect on not only my household finances, but as well as some others that I work with," said Dennis Lafavor, SRNS employee.

In a forum for employees, Congressman Wilson, who's a former SRNS employee himself, says the Department of Energy Environmental Management has $79 million already allocated for SRS. But those funds need to be shifted, or "reprogrammed," into the accounts the corporation can use to offset personnel cuts. The Congressman says 900 employees could be fully furloughed if the funds aren't reprogrammed soon.

"If they don't get the funds reprogrammed then I'm really worried about being the ones fully furloughed," said Kim Wyszynski, a 29-year SRNS employee. "Because with two boys in college, you know, they depend on me."

Others affected are taking action; signing petitions to stop the furloughs.

"People are frustrated, and they need a way to express their frustration," said Susan Sadowski, who's married to an SRNS employee.

And that frustration is what county and state representatives want congress to relieve with a speedy approval of their reprogramming request.

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