March 6, 2013
OLYMPIA — Federal budget cuts may disrupt efforts to close the radioactive waste tanks currently leaking at Hanford Nuclear Reservation and lead to layoffs or furloughs among workers there, officials said Tuesday.
In a letter to Washington Gov. Jay Inslee, the Department of Energy estimates that it will have to eliminate $92 million in funding for the Office of River Protection at Hanford, which will result in furloughs or layoffs impacting about 2,800 contract workers. Inslee spokesman David Postman said the governor's initial concern is for the workers but emphasized that budget constraints cannot be an excuse to delay response to the leaking tanks.
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