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19 U of A Faculty, Staff Members Furloughed

Until now, the university was able to keep federal grants and contracts because of back-up state funds.
FAYETTEVILLE, AR -- The ongoing government shutdown has led 19 workers at the University of Arkansas to be furloughed.

Monday, eight faculty and 11 staff members were told they would no longer be paid to work on federally-funded projects.

Until now, the university was able to keep federal grants and contracts because of back-up state funds.

School officials say it's terrible timing for the growing university.

"This is the worst thing that could happen," Vice Provost Jim Rankin says. "We are really looking at becoming a top 50 public research university, and so we're really trying to encourage an active research program and to have our faculty and our researchers be told to shut down in the middle is just not good for the university and it's just not good for the faculty, and so we really want this over with as soon as possible."

Rankin adds once a deal is made to end the shutdown, things can return to normal for school employees.

Health care for those who are furloughed will be covered until the end of the month, but if the government is still shutdown come November, employees will have to find other options.
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