U.S. Army Lays Off Hundreds of Humvee Workers Amid Budget Delay

March 16 (Bloomberg) -- The U.S. Army has laid off “several hundred” contract employees performing Humvee restoration work at depots in Pennsylvania and Texas, including employees of DynCorp International Inc., Army officials said.

Army Secretary John McHugh attributed the reductions at the Letterkenny Army Depot in Chambersburg, Pennsylvania, and at the Red River Army Depot in Texarkana, Texas, to Congress’s delay in passing a federal budget. He also said that the lack of a budget for the 2011 fiscal year has forced him to extend a hiring freeze across the Army.

“Each day that we’re not provided with an appropriations bill, it presents greater and greater problems,” McHugh said today during testimony before the House Appropriations subcommittee on defense.

Since Oct. 1, the start of the fiscal year, Congress has funded the government with a series of stopgap measures known as continuing resolutions, which continue funding at last year’s levels and don’t authorize changes in programs.

The reductions at Letterkenny are equivalent to 288 full-time positions, or about 10 percent of the depot’s workforce, and affected employees of Falls Church, Virginia-based DynCorp and subcontractors of Alexandria, Virginia-based Tiburon Associates Inc., Mark Sheffield, deputy commander of the Letterkenny Army Depot, said in a telephone interview.

The depot, which also repairs Patriot missiles, generators and other military equipment, has restored more than 20,000 Humvees made by AM General LLC since 2004, Sheffield said. The facility’s workforce of 2,972 workforce includes 1,193 contractors, he said.

A spokeswoman for DynCorp did not immediately respond to an e-mail request for comment.

To contact the reporter on this story: Brendan McGarry in Washington bmcgarry2@bloomberg.net.

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Mark Silva at msilva34@bloomberg.net.