CLOVER, SC (WBTV) - The United States Army Field Band and Soldiers Chorus have canceled their April concert in Clover, South Carolina, due to cuts required by sequestration, according to officials with Clover School District Auditorium.
The April 8 concert was planned in mid-February, and tickets were printed and distributed. On March 8, school officials said they received a call from the tour director "canceling the event and offering his sincere apologies. "
Colonel Timothy J. Holtan, U.S. Army Commanding, confirmed that the cancellation was due to the defense budget cuts required under sequestration.
"We have scheduled 139 performances in the coming months, all of which will be canceled under sequestration," Col. Holtan said, adding, "These unusual fiscal constraints are forcing our nation's senior leaders to prioritize the military's most essential missions, ensuring our deployed Soldiers and their units remain ready, resilient, and fully supported."
Master Sergeant Bill Bullman thanked the CSDA staff for the support of the Clover community, and apologized for the "abrupt and unfortunate cancellation."
The sequestration, which took effect on March 1, involved $85 billion worth of federal budget cuts. Of that, $46 billion was scheduled for military cuts.
Uniformed members of the military are exempt, as well as money for wartime operations in Afghanistan, programs run through the Department of Veteran's Affairs, and entitlements like Social Security, Medicare, Medicaid, unemployment insurance, and food stamps.