Farm subsidies, FBI, air controllers face big cuts
WASHINGTON – Come January, be prepared for fewer air traffic controllers, FBI agents, border patrol officers and park rangers, as well as lower farm and winter heating subsidies. Less meat might get inspected. Furloughs will likely sweep across the government. Even the weather service could be affected.
The looming funding crisis in domestic spending is the result of automatic across-the-board cuts that go into effect Jan. 2 because of Washington's inability – so far – to reach a budget deal for achieving less red ink in the future.
The idea behind the automatic cuts, called a sequester in Washington parlance, was to force the warring sides to agree on a deal to slash out-of-control deficits that currently require the government to borrow 33 cents of every dollar it spends. The sequester was intentionally designed to be harsh if the negotiators couldn't agree – and they haven't yet.
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