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The Rolla Daily News - Rolla, MO
  • Fort area feeling effect of shutdown

  • Americans across the country are facing the effects of the partial government shutdown. For the Waynesville-St. Robert area — where Fort Leonard Wood dominates the economy as a leading employer — the effects are much greater compared to other areas.
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  • Americans across the country are facing the effects of the partial government shutdown.
    For the Waynesville-St. Robert area — where Fort Leonard Wood dominates the economy as a leading employer — the effects are much greater compared to other areas.
    Despite the military still getting paid thanks to a last-minute bill approved late Monday night, the Department of Defense (DoD) civilian workforce is taking a huge slash.
    According to the Fort Leonard Wood Public Affairs Office (PAO), there are approximately 9,000 civilian workers employed on post.
    While PAO officials did not know how many of those civilians will be furloughed, nationally half of DoD civilians will be furloughed because of the government shutdown. It is estimated that approximately 4,500 civilian workers will be furloughed at the post, leaving quite an impact on the local economy.
    Local business owner Cat Spencer of Blood Brothers Ink said he is preparing for his business to take a hit because of the furloughs.
    "As a local business owner, I'm quite sure that the furloughs will affect my business," he said. "I have clientele who have been recovering from this past summer's furloughs who probably won't be in to patronize my business for a while longer, now."
    Spencer said the government's shutdown is hurting more than just the civilians who are furloughed.
    "The government shutdown reaches far beyond those directly affected. The waves this causes ripple out into the entire local business community," he said. "I'm sure that applies to military bases throughout the country."
    Several organizations and businesses on post will be shut down, including the commissary.
    According to the Fort Leonard Wood PAO said the commissary was open Tuesday, but will be closed for the remainder of the shutdown.
    The General Leonard Wood Army Community Hospital on Fort Leonard Wood will continue all in-patient and wounded warrior care activities. All patients will still be able to schedule medical appointments for most outpatient services, and none of the scheduled appointments will be cancelled.
    Non-emergent elective medical and dental surgeries will be curtailed during the government shutdown.
    The John B. Mahaffey Complex is closed to the public during the government shutdown. However, graduations scheduled in the museum will still take place.
    However, all active-duty military will remain on duty and several facilities and organizations will remain open.
    Patrons will have use of Family, Morale, Welfare and Recreation facilities, including the bowling alley, fitness centers, child care facilities, Outdoor Adventure Center, ITR, Piney Valley Golf Course, Pershing Community Center, auto and arts and crafts shops.
    All Family, Morale, Welfare and Recreation services, which are funded with non-appropriated funds, will continue despite the government shutdown.
    Exchange facilities on post will remain open.
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