Tuesday, July 31, 2012

WARN Notification Crisis Averted In Budget Deal

As we predicted in this space just a few hours ago, Speaker Boehner and Majority Leader Reid just announced a deal for a six month long continuing resolution maintaining federal government agency spending at the $1.047 trillion level for the first six months of federal fiscal 2013, which begins October 1, 2012. The announcement averts the spectre of hundreds of thousands - or even millions – of WARN Act notifications of impending layoffs to employees of government contractors whose businesses might have been affected by loss of revenue from federal contracts should an election eve budget battle in Congress have raised the possibility of a government shutdown a month before Presidential and Congressional elections.

While drafting of the actual continuing resolution could take a few more weeks, announcement of the deal should dry the sweat on the brows of dozens of government contractor employment lawyers who were facing a fish or cut bait decision deadline under the WARN Act in two days. Whew!! In their desire to take off for their six week recess, Congressmen and Senators have finally realized that the fallout from failure to act on this important matter would likely have resulted in a pox on both their houses in the forthcoming campaign season. The citizens can only hold out faint hope, though, that this announcement is a harbinger of any significant increase in the level of responsible leadership we can expect from Washington, D.C. politicians.

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