WASHINGTON – Possibly more than one million federal employees may be affected by wide reaching hatchet-style cuts.
If sequestration takes hold, workers would likely begin taking unpaid leave by late March or early April.
Experts say people living paycheck to paycheck are gearing up for lifestyle changes, expecting less money each month.
“You should be cutting back right now and trimming things so that you have some cushion,” warns University of Maryland Economist Peter Morici. “Certainly they have to cut back on discretionary expenses.”
In many cases, employees could be forced to take one unpaid day off each week or every two weeks through September.
“They could start turning off every other light bulb and changing their diet,” he says. “Most people in the United States could get by on less money than they do.”
The cuts are expected to have a substantial impact on the private sector surrounding government due to reductions in contract spending.