WASHINGTON -- No one answered the tax-help hotline at the IRS. Forget about getting advice on avoiding foreclosures at any of the Housing and Urban Development offices nationwide.
Roughly 5 percent of the federal workforce - 115,000 people at six government agencies - got an unpaid day off on Friday due to the automatic "sequester" cuts to the budget.
The furloughs led some agencies such as the IRS and HUD to drastically scale back operations. There was only a negligible effect at some other agencies.
The Labor Department had just 437 of about 16,500 workers furloughed. Besides, it was the Friday before the Memorial Day holiday weekend. There are more furlough days to come.