(WBIR-Oak Ridge) One week after the federal government shut down, the people of East Tennessee are feeling the effects more every day.
Monday, the National Nuclear Security Administration ordered one of the most secure sights in the world to scale back its work.
Y-12 National Security Complex employees recieved a letter Monday morning explaining that they should prepare for furloughs. It is unclear how many workers will be forced off the job with no pay.
"This is the same situation that many folks elsewhere in the government have already been experiencing," Chuck Spencer, Y-12 general manager, wrote in a letter to employees Monday.
"We can only hope that the need for furloughs will be averted or that they will be short-lived," Spencer said.
Y-12 employs 4,800 people and is located in Oak Ridge, a city of only about 30,000 people. The complex creates thousands of additional jobs in the area and has an indirect economic impact of $3 billion, according the Y-12's annual report in 2012.
Y-12 is why Oak Ridge was was built in the first place.
"Oak Ridge is pretty much a government town," said Dean Russell, owner of Dean's Restaurant and Bakery in Jackson Square. "A lot of our business comes from government employees and the contractors surrounding it."
Russell estimates 35 to 40 percent of his business comes from government employees.
"It's a little scary," he said, thinking about how a long-term shut down would impact his business.
Russell is asking Congress to act before the complex has to close, for the city's sake.
"I'm hoping it's a short term thing and that Washington gets it together so that we don't get a big hit in the economy because of it," Russell said. "For something like that to happen in a small town like this is major."
The National Nuclear Security Administration told Y-12 to begin shutting down the facility to ensure the complex's safety and security. The facility is expected to give additional details about its shutdown plan to employees this week or next week.