Last week, Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel announced that the Pentagon will reduce the number of furlough days for civilian employees from 14 to 11. This number is down from the 22 mandatory furlough days originally scheduled for the Department's 800,000 civilian employees. 

The Department also announced furlough exceptions for nearly 150,000 employees, bringing the total number of workers being furloughed to approximately 650,000.  Exceptions are being granted to the following:
1. Employees deployed to combat zones
2. Foreign Nationals

3. Non-appropriated fund (NAF) employees
"Furloughing employees in this category would not reduce the DoD budget and so would not assist in meeting sequestration reductions."
4. Employees who are engaged in the protection of life and property
This is not a blanket exception for all employees engaged in the protection of life and property; rather exemptions will be approved on an installation by installation basis through an application process to the Component which differs from Component to Component.
5. All President appointed and Senate-approved political appointees
6. Employees of Navy Shipyards

Four shipyards are being exempt from the furloughs because furloughing employees at those facilities would interfere with and delay important maintenance projects on the nuclear ships housed in those yards.
7. Foreign Military Sales personnel whose positions are funded by Foreign Military Financing Accounts.
Because there would be no savings
8. Employees at the Arlington National Cemetery and Defense Civil Works program 
9. Furloughs for employees funded with National Intelligence Program funds will be determined by the Director of National Intelligence

The Department said furloughs will preferably be implemented on the basis of one day per week between July 8th and the end of the fiscal year in September. This equates to two days per pay period. The Department did note, however, that it will honor existing local furlough implementation plans. Furlough notices are scheduled to go out between May 28th and June 5th. Furlough decisions will be issued between June 5th and July 5th and furloughs will commence July 8th. 

In addition, Secretary Hagel reserved the right to revisit the number of furlough days, allowing for possible changes to the number of days employees are furloughed, presumably reducing the number if at all possible.

For more specific information about the excepted categories refer to the "Department of Defense Furlough Memo 5-14-13", in the Related Documents sections on the right side of the page.

DoD Furlough Timeline:
- May 28 - June 5: Furlough proposal notices will be     served to individual employees subject to furloughs.

- June 4 - June 12: Individual employee reply periods end 7 calendar days from when the proposal was received, unless Component procedures allow for a different reply period.

- June 5 - July 5: Furlough decision letters will be served to individual employees subject to furloughs, depending on when the proposal was received and prior to the first day of furloughs.

- July 8: Furlough period begins no earlier than this date.

- September 30: Furloughs end.

Only a life lived for others is a life worthwhile. - Albert Einstein
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