Colonel Amy Cook says the Texas National Guard will be affected. She says, “This will cause some readiness issues for us. It will cause a slowdown in the maintenance of our vehicles - some of those we use if there is a flood or a hurricane.”
Civilian employees of the Texas Guard must take one furlough day per week for the next 11 weeks. It’s essentially a 20 percent pay cut.
Colonel Cook says Texas Adjutant General John Nichols is working now to minimize the effect should the state face a major disaster and reach out for help.
What areas are hit hardest?
She explains, “Administrative headquarters jobs like public affairs, the office I run – or, our maintenance or aviation operations. We're sustaining functions or making ready functions that might be needed in case of emergency.”
Even Cook didn’t escape. She says she was told, “We're a customer service oriented organization, but I'm furloughed, so on the days we’re furloughed we're not allowed to respond to emails or phone calls.”
The furloughs could be extended after 11 weeks.