Lockheed Says Furloughs Could Delay F-35 Fighter, Other Programs

By Andrea Shalal-Esa/Reuters

Most of the company’s weapons programs take years to build, which meant that the cuts would not have a huge impact on contracts in the short-term, although shorter-term orders and services were already seeing some slowdown, she said.

Tanner said government workers were involved in flight testing of the F-35 jet in a variety of different jobs, including working in the air traffic control tower, providing mid-air refueling and piloting planes.

If those workers were missing 20 percent of the time, or the bases where the planes are being tested shut down, the program’s schedule could be delayed, Tanner said.

He said the company was also bracing for a possible slowdown in contract payments as a result of the reduced work time for civilians, since a large part of the company’s bills were handled at a Defense Department facility in Columbus, Ohio, which is staffed by many non-military employees.

“If all of a sudden people are only there for four days out of five, do I get paid 80 percent of the bills that I send in, or does it take that much longer,” he said.

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