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Marine base cuts another 395 workers

YERMO• Just weeks after cutting 170 contract workers, the Marine Corps Logistics Base in Barstow laid off another 395 employees Wednesday, according to MCLB officials.

The temporary hires, which included vehicle mechanics, painters and helpers, worked their last day Wednesday and will begin out-processing procedures like returning security badges and vehicle passes starting Thursday, said MCLB spokesman Rob Jackson. Their official last day will be Dec. 4, Jackson said.

The layoffs came just one day after President Barack Obama announced a 30,000 troop surge in Afghanistan. According to MCLB officials, the vehicles they expected to come back needing repair are instead staying overseas.

“As operational commitments have grown overseas, the expected equipment is being used to support operations in Afghanistan,” according to an MCLB press release.

The initial layoffs began Nov. 16 when 170 contractors with U.S. Logistics, Lear Siegler Incorporated and the Parker Group were given written notices and sent home Nov. 25. The base hired about 400 temporary workers since July in anticipation of a surge in returning vehicles and equipment needing repair before being sent back to overseas.

So far a total of 567 MCLB workers have been cut since mid-November. Jackson said he did not know whether the base anticipated cutting any additional workers at this time.

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