NEWPORT NEWS, Va. (WAVY) — On the heels of the Navy's announcement of specific sequestration cuts coming March 1, Congressman Bobby Scott (R-VA) held a forum in Newport News Tuesday evening.
Sequestration, or across-the-board cuts, will be implemented in less than two weeks pending a delay. Scott said the cuts are bound to affect the Hampton Roads economy.
"We passed on Jan. 1 a $4 trillion tax cut, and now we're looking for a $1.2 trillion to offset the sequester," Scott said. "It seems to me we should have thought about that before we spent the $4 trillion but we are where we are. We're going to point out... the choices we will have to make going forward."
Although some may say compromise may be lacking in Congress right now, Scott said the bigger issue is that lawmakers are doing nothing right now to avoid the cuts.
"It's really hurtful and it brings a lot of pain because you have so many people affected by the decision congress makes," Newport News resident Gary Preston said.
"I've kind of planned for it, so at least we have a little bit of a cushion so if something does happen, at least for the short term, we can get over it," Newport News resident Edward Matz said.
Representative Scott Rigell (R-VA) released the following statement Tuesday:
The Senate’s failure to act is the principal reason that we are in this predicament; however, attributing responsibility does not stop the sequester or protect local jobs. What is required, and what I focus on daily, is advancing a wise legislative alternative to sequestration. I again call on the leadership of Congress, Republican and Democrat, House and Senate, along with the President to advance an agreement that would spare the nation from these unwise cuts. The House and the Senate should come back into session immediately so that we can focus exclusively on this urgent issue.
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