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Blunt sent a letter to Tom Vilsack urging him to use his existing authorities to configure reductions and furloughs in a way that minimizes the economic impact to private sector employees and consumers and to ensure USDA continues meeting its inspection obligations.
In his letter Blunt says—quote—since a federal inspector must be present during processing of meat, poultry and egg products, the decision to implement furloughs without the use of available flexibility would shutter 6,290 facilities nationwide. He says that would result in more than $400 million in lost wages for the thousands of people who work on those facilities, including more than 43,000 in Missouri.