With uncertainty as to whether $85 billion in federal sequestration spending cuts will be stopped by Congress before Friday, officials in Walpole are keeping a close eye on the issue.
Without action from Congress, the sequester would go into effect automatically on March 1, reducing spending by the state in a number of areas, including education, the environment, health, military and law enforcement, the White House said.
The White House recently released a statement outlining the impacts the sequester would have state-by-state, including Massachusetts.
According to reports, one area that could be impacted the most on a local level are the schools.
Massachusetts would lose $13.9 million in education funding and another $13.9 million in cuts to education for students with disabilities.
“It’s difficult to say how it will effect us directly, but indirectly I’m told that it could have an impact on some educational programs,” Dedham Town Administrator Bill Keegan said.
“There is some Federal money that comes in for education. Specifically for the No Child Left Behind program, things of that nature,” he said. “Of anybody who gets Federal funding I would say they would be the one that would probably be impacted the most.”
Keegan said the town does not receive a lot of Federal funding directly from the government.
He did say, however, they receive money from the state that comes from the Federal government.
“So that’s where we’re going to have to pay close attention to see how much it impacts some of the programs that the town gets from the state,” Keegan said.
“We’re going to wait and see. I’m listening to the radio just like everybody else and there doesn’t appear to be any type of a resolution in place. They may just let it happen and then we’ll see where the chips fall at that point,” said Keegan.