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Lockheed Martin’s Space Business To Cut 1,200 Jobs

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(credit: lockheedmartin.com)

(credit: lockheedmartin.com)

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DENVER (AP) – Aerospace and defense contractor Lockheed Martin Corp. plans to cut 1,200 employees in its space systems equipment division.

The company said Tuesday the cuts will be nationwide and trim the division’s 16,000-person work force by nearly 8 percent. The company said middle management will be reduced by 25 percent.

The cuts will most heavily affect areas where Lockheed Martin is ending contracts, such as Sunnyvale, Calif., the Delaware Valley region of Pennsylvania, and Denver.

Lockheed said it will offer voluntary layoffs to eligible salaried employees to minimize involuntary job cuts.

The cutbacks come as budgetary pressures are prompting the Obama administration to pare back defense spending. On Tuesday, a House panel approved a defense spending bill that would impose limits on U.S. spending in Iraq and Afghanistan.

By voice vote, the House Appropriations Committee approved the legislation that would provide $530 billion to the Pentagon and $119 billion for the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. The bill is $9 billion less than President Barack Obama requested.

The space systems division makes a variety of products, from satellites to spacecraft and missile defense systems, used by military and commercial customers. Lockheed didn’t specify which programs are being ended, and a spokesman did not immediately return a message seeking comment.

(Copyright 2011 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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