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1st day of DOD furloughs brings broader struggle - abc27 WHTM

1st day of DOD furloughs brings broader struggle

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CARLISLE, Pa. (WHTM) -

On a normal Monday, Cancun Mexican restaurant in Carlisle should have been dealing with their typical lunch-hour rush.

"We'd have all these tables filled up but now as you can see we have like four or five, so its tough," said server Brandon Garcia.

He works for tips and normally profits from being right outside the barracks. He said about 80 percent of their business is from military or civilian that work on post.

On this day, that lunchtime crowd was elsewhere -- on furlough. 

"Now my weekend consists of Sunday, Monday, Tuesday," said Civilian Department of Defense worker Michael Seeger, a material handler at the New Cumberland Army Depot.

He expects to lose about $600 per month because of mandatory furloughs caused by the sequester. He is now looking at adding part-time work to his resume and, like many of his fellow DOD, workers he will be making cuts of his own.

"There are things that we will cut that we don't normally cut but a family's got to do what they got to do," he said.

Cut from the family budget will be things like renting movies, taking a vacation and going out to dinner.

That's bad news for local businesses and workers.

"As you know we work off of tips," said Garcia overlooking an empty table.

Normally, he'd expect to bring in around $100 a shift, but on days like this, he's lucky to bring in $60.

So instead of waiting tables he's left to wait around for hundreds of thousands of defense workers to return to their posts full time.

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