Georgia military bases shedding civilians jobs

SAVANNAH, Ga. (AP) - Communities across Georgia are preparing for an economic blow from an industry that's long seemed recession-proof: the military.

Five of the state's major bases are planning to shed nearly 1,200 civilian jobs worth more than $84 million in wages and benefits. Commanders insist they can make most of the cuts by eliminating vacant positions and through early retirements and buyouts.

Still, that's more Georgia jobs lost with unemployment barely under 10 percent. University of Georgia economist Jeffrey Humphreys says deeper cuts could follow as the federal government keeps slashing spending.

Robins Air Force Base faces a loss of 516 jobs, followed by Fort Stewart with 340 jobs. Fort Benning is eliminating 250 jobs, while Fort Gordon in Augusta and Moody Air Force Base in Valdosta are each shedding 39 positions.

(Copyright 2011 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)