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Region could lose hundreds of thousands of jobs under sequestration

Maryland officials on Wednesday predicted that a federal budget sequester would cost the Free State more than 12,600 jobs. However, economists have projected six-figure job losses each for the Maryland, Virginia and District economies, which are more dependent on the federal government for jobs than most jurisdictions.

According to a recent report from George Mason University's Center for Regional Analysis, the 10 jurisdictions that have the most jobs at risk if $1.2 trillion in budget cuts takes place over the next decade are:

1. California: 225,464

2. Virginia: 207,571

3. Texas: 159,473

4. District: 127,407

5. Maryland: 114,795

6. Florida: 79,459

7. Pennsylvania: 78,454

8. Guam/Puerto Rico/Undistributed: 76,958

9. New York: 70,010

10. Massachusetts: 60,497

In other words, Maryland, Virginia and the District combined would lose about 450,000 employees -- or more than one in every five of the jobs eliminated, according to the George Mason analysis.

Though Maryland budget officials predicted fewer job losses than the George Mason study, they said such a development would be calamitous for the state.

"Job losses of this magnitude would send Maryland into recession," the state budget officials concluded, saying the job losses would reduce the state's tax base by roughly $200 million each year.