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The sequester budget cuts: Southern California's needy begin to feel the effects




One-year-old Melanie, and mother Michelle Zamora make faces at each other. The school district's Early Childhood programs, which use Head Start funds, are facing a 5-8% cut with federal sequestration.
One-year-old Melanie, and mother Michelle Zamora make faces at each other. The school district's Early Childhood programs, which use Head Start funds, are facing a 5-8% cut with federal sequestration.
Maya Sugarman/KPCC

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It's been about three months since lawmakers in Washington failed to reach agreement on a budget, which triggered tens of billions of dollars in federal spending cuts. 

Supporters say the sequestration cuts were needed to lower the nation's soaring deficit, but opponents warned of dire consequences. So far, the effects have been muted for many in Southern California, but not for all. 

Over the next few days, we're going to be hearing from people feeling the impact of the reduction in federal spending. 

We begin with KPCC's Ben Bergman, who found the sequester is hurting some of Southern California's neediest residents.