How government shutdown affects Jacksonville Navy bases

Non-essential staff sent home from work Monday

By Jim Piggott - Reporter

One of the largest employers in Jacksonville is the military, and the government shutdown was definitely felt on Northeast Florida's bases Monday.

Naval Station Mayport and Naval Air Station Jacksonville remained open Monday but non-essential staff members were sent home.

The Fleet Readiness Center Southeast employs around 4,500 civilians in Jacksonville, and a spokesperson said the center remained open Monday.

Pilots, sailors and enlisted staff were working Monday at Jacksonville's bases, but under the specter of concern over their paychecks.

U.S. Rep. John Rutherford, R-Jacksonville, said enlisted personnel will get paid, eventually, even if the shutdown continues.

“It would take weeks for them to get their back pay,” Rutherford said. “What I hear from the last shutdown (is) it took quite a while to get that back pay settled.”

Several pilots told News4Jax that they were not worried because they were told several programs are in place that will ensure they will get their money, even if paychecks are delayed.

Wounded Warrior Project said Monday that it also had money set aside to help those in need, if it came to that.

The Navy Exchange remained open Monday because it had to sell items that would otherwise spoil, but officials said if the shutdown had continued beyond Wednesday, the commissary would have closed.

Just after 6 p.m. Monday, Congress approved a bipartisan agreement to reopen the federal government after the three-day partial shutdown.

Copyright 2018 by WJXT News4Jax. The Associated Press contributed to this report. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.