IDAHO FALLS, Idaho - About 2,600 employees of Battelle Energy Alliance will be furloughed starting Oct. 18.
In an email to all employees, John Grossenbacher, Idaho National Laboratory director, said the reduction of the contractor's workforce comes as a consequence of the partial shutdown of the federal government.
About 900 workers deemed essential by Battelle for site operations, safety and security will continue to report to work.
Those impacted by the furlough will get more information next week. Battelle employees who are part of the reduction can use their earned personal leave, earned bank or comp time hours, or time off without pay. Their health benefits will continue.
It is unknown when furloughed workers will come back to work. Employees should watch INL's external website, toll-free number and local media, Grossenbacher said.
"I understand how disruptive this curtailment will be to many of you and your families. … I encourage us all to help and support colleagues and co-workers who are impacted by the curtailment to the best of our ability during a period which will undoubtedly prove very difficult for some," Grossenbacher wrote.