• Spending cuts could impact people across Charlotte area

    By: Holly Maynard

    Updated:

    Millions of dollars in spending cuts that could take effect next week could impact people all over the Charlotte area. The cuts stem from August 2011 when lawmakers fought over raising the debt ceiling. The end result could be $1.2 trillion in across-the-board government spending cuts over the next decade.

    The Defense Department would feel the brunt of the cuts, but there are several other agencies that will be affected too. Channel 9 dug into a few ways that people here would be affected.

    Travelers at Charlotte Douglas may notice delays because air traffic controllers may be furloughed. The lines at the TSA checkpoints could also be longer because those employees may be furloughed too.

    The spending cuts may also affect people like Germaine Williams, who was searching for a welding job when Eyewitness News interviewed him. He's been unemployed for six months. People on unemployment could lose an average of $400 between March and September.

    "That's going to hurt, that's going to hurt big time," Williams said. "That's going to put me in a bind, you know? Got bills I've got to pay."

    College students could be affected too. Some could lose financial aid.

    "That's the reason why I'm here," said University of North Carolina at Charlotte student Quita Floyd. "My family could not afford to get me here."

    "I just think that if we need to make cuts, there are other places that we can make them," said UNCC student Joel Fitzgerald.

    Some lawmakers, such as Republican U.S. Rep. Mick Mulvaney, said while the cuts are not ideal, they're not as dramatic as some lawmakers make them out to be.

    "We whip people into a fear that their lives are going to be dramatically different if the government spends a few dollars less. That's simply not right," he said.

    In the coming weeks, Congress and the White House could cancel or replace the spending cuts, but most lawmakers agree that the chances of that happening are very slim.


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