President to meet with Congressional leaders over sequester

Updated: Wednesday, February 27 2013, 12:45 PM EST
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WASHINGTON, D.C. (NEWSCHANNEL 3) - The clock is ticking down in Washington with less than 48 hours now until deep budget cuts are scheduled to kick in.

We've just found out that the president has scheduled a meeting with congressional leaders for Friday after the deadline has passed.

Those across the board cuts could mean layoffs and some services being slashed.

Wednesday we're getting a clearer picture of how it could affect people here in West Michigan and when that impact would be felt.

Although the automatic spending cuts are scheduled for Friday, our own state government here likely will not feel the impact for another month.

Michigan's Budget Chief says there will be quote  - "real cuts for real people."

Those cuts could include reduced aid to poor families with heating bills and to low-income pregnant women and young children needing healthy food.

Also on the White House's list, 10,000 Department of Defense employees in Michigan could be furloughed. 300 teacher and aide jobs are also at risk statewide if we lose $42-million in federal funding for education. 2,300 Michigan kids could also lose access to Head Start programs.

Federal Reserve Chairman, Ben Bernanke, says budget cuts should come over the next decade, not now, when they will likely hurt the economic recovery.

"It doesn't quite match to be doing tough policies today when the real problem is in the longer term problem," said Bernanke.

Michigan's Budget Chief says the largest chunks of federal aid for our state are being spared from the cuts, things like Medicaid, food stamps and welfare.

President to meet with Congressional leaders over sequester
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