By: Christine Souders
Federal workers who were furloughed during the 16 day government shutdown will start seeing the pay they missed, a sigh of relief for thousands of Rock Island Arsenal employees.
The announcement was made Thursday, but Arsenal workers will still have to wait nearly two weeks to get those back wages.
"Our we going to get paid? Are we not going to get paid? Are we donating our time?" said Gloria Cypret who was a furloughed program analyst at the Rock Island Arsenal.
Cypret said in the 30 years she's worked on the island, she's never been more nervous about getting paid then she was during the shutdown.
"It was a stressful time."
On Thursday, her paycheck, along with the other thousands working without the promise of pay in these past couple of weeks, was short by up to five days of compensation, a financial hardship for many who have bills to pay.
"I was one of the fortunate ones. I had my savings to fall back on, so we got through it," Cypret said.
But now employees know the money is coming.
"We are busily, amending time and attendance reports, so that it will appear as though we all worked regular hours during that period of time," said Renee Michl, the Human Resources Director for Garrison on the Arsenal.
We're told things should get back to normal.
"It is as though the furlough impacts have basically been reversed, so the difficult part is that it happened, the good part is it's going to be as though it never happened."
Arsenal workers should see the back pay reflected in their paychecks at the end of October.
Gloria Cypret said for now this takes some of the worries away, but is taking it with a grain of salt because the government is only funded through January 15th.
The measure ending the shutdown also lets federal workers get a 1% raise in January.
Although, officials at the Rock Island Arsenal said they have not been notified yet about the raise, it would be the first pay increase since salaries were frozen in 2010.
The legislation keeps on track a plan for raises that President Barack Obama laid out earlier this year.