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      Governor Bentley: 24,000 jobs at stake on budget cuts

      Governor Robert Bentley said the state stands to lose 24,000 jobs if automatic government spending cuts kick in on March 1.

      Governor Bentley said the impact was calculated by the National Governors Association.{} It forecast the biggest impact in Alabama would be on defense-related jobs.{} The Huntsville area would be the hardest hit.

      Governor Bentley's comments Wednesday coincided with Defense Secretary, Leon Panetta, telling Congress that he may have to shorten the work week for the vast majority of the Defense Department's 800,000 civilian workers if the automatic budget cuts occur.

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