The Pentagon has begun to detail its cost-cutting plans in workforce and regional terms. It has enacted a freeze in civilian hiring, a move that hits employment for veterans since 44 percent of civilian defense employees are vets.
The military services also are planning to lay off temporary or contract employees, which could affect up to 46,000 workers. They will also delay routine maintenance of ships and aircraft that had been planned for the third and fourth quarters, officials said.
The Navy estimates its planned cuts will reduce spending by $1.4 billion along the East Coast, including canceling $271 million in maintenance at shipyards in the Norfolk, Virginia, area and $81 million in aircraft maintenance at Cherry Point, North Carolina.
The Navy also is planning to cancel $681 million in spending in California, $339 million in the Pacific Northwest, $299 million in Florida, $197 million in the U.S. Northeast and $110 million in Hawaii, officials said.
If automatic spending cuts under sequestration go into effect on March 1, the Navy would have to cut a further $4.08 billion in spending through the end of the current fiscal year, over and above the $6.3 billion it is trying to reduce now.
Those cuts would require further delays in repairs and a reduction in the number of steaming and flying days, the Navy said. The Navy might also have to reduce the number of carrier strike groups in the Middle East, it said.
The Army and Air Force also are expected to implement spending reductions before March 1 and are due to submit their plans to Deputy Secretary of Defense Ashton Carter later this week.