BALTIMORE (WJZ) — Maryland has one of the highest numbers of federal employees in the nation.
Now that President Donald Trump has ordered a hiring freeze for most federal workers, some are worried about their future.
From social security, to the NSA. General services, to the Goddard Space Flight Center, many Marylanders have their paychecks signed by the federal government.
Before his inaugural grandstands have even been removed, President Trump has halted the hiring of federal workers.
The federal freeze orders all open civilian position remain empty, with no new roles created and no contracting to circumvent it.
In Maryland, the hit could be hard, with 50 government agencies and facilities calling the state home, along with 130,000 federal employees.
“I’m a Maryland resident. It’s going to impact my neighbors. It’s going to impact my family,” said Toney Reardon, head of the National Treasury Employee’s Union.
Reardon says even people who don’t work for the government will feel the freeze.
“If agencies cannot provide the services that Americans need, that’s a problem.”
One example – the IRS – which is ramping up for tax season. Reardon warns without a full staff, refunds could be significantly delayed.
The freeze fears could have an even deeper impact in Maryland. With potential cuts looming, federal workers may cut their spending.
“I’m not going to buy that new car. I’m not going to go out to that local grocery store and buy what I otherwise might buy,” said Reardon.
The hiring freeze is in effect for 90 days, and some federal workers are counting down.
Maryland Senator Ben Cardin has spoken out against the freeze, saying it hurts all Americans.
There are exceptions to the hiring freeze, including those working in the military, national security and public safety.