Thousands of Pearl Harbor Naval Shipyard workers furloughed

Thousands of Pearl Harbor Naval Shipyard workers furloughed

HONOLULU (HawaiiNewsNow) - There are nearly 4,400 civilian employees at the Pearl Harbor Naval Shipyard. Roughly two-thirds of them are now furloughed because of the government shutdown.

Pedro Quintal, Jr. is a training supervisor at the shipyard. The husband and father of two waited anxiously on Monday to find out if he would be among the nearly 3,000 employees who would be furloughed.

"We got a mortgage to pay. We got bills. We all got bills. We live here in Hawaii. It's a beautiful place, but it's high cost of living," said Quintal.

The employees who aren't exempt from the furloughs perform a wide-range of duties from administrative work to maintenance on ships and submarines. There is a lot of uncertainty for the workers.

"If it's gonna happen, how long is it gonna be in place? So that's what a lot of the people, it's on their mind," said Quintal.

"The furloughed employees, the only way they would be paid or receive any retro pay for the time they were furloughed is if there was a separate appropriation by Congress," explained Randy Sawyer, executive director of the Pearl Harbor Naval Shipyard.

There are three submarines in dry dock right now. Most repair and maintenance work on the vessels will be on hold during the shutdown.

"Potentially there could be an impact to the readiness of the fleet in terms of returning the submarines back to the fleet," said Sawyer.

The shutdown will not affect the National Memorial Cemetery of the Pacific. The cemetery is open to the public, and is conducting all normal operations.

Several other agencies will also be impacted. National monuments and parks like the World Ward Two Valor in the Pacific National Monument will be closed to the public. The federal court has enough funds to run for 10 business days. The Honolulu Police Department is uncertain about the effect on gun registrations if the dispute drags on.

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