LA federal workers not expected to be furloughed Monday

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By John Severance

Employees at Los Alamos National Laboratory and local offices of the National Nuclear Security Administration as well as the Department of Energy are hopeful they will be able to return to work Monday even if there is a government shutdown.

"Everyone is still hopeful that an agreement will be reached to avoid a shutdown," a source familiar with NNSA's and LANL's contingency efforts said Thursday. "It's prudent for everyone, including those at Los Alamos, to prepare for various scenarios. But LANL employees aren't expected to be furloughed on Monday. There is funding available that would keep us operating for some time in the event of a government shutdown." Energy secretary Steven Chu sent an email to all DOE employees that was obtained by the Los Alamos Monitor Thursday regarding the possible shutdown.

Depending on how quickly a new appropriations bill is enacted, some DOE employees could be furloughed and unable to work,” Chu wrote. “However, unlike most other federal agencies, the Department has no-year appropriations. This would allow us to continue operating for a limited time.  Therefore, if a new funding bill is not enacted Friday, all DOE Federal employees are still expected to report to work as usual on their next scheduled work day.