Four months later, Washington managing to cope with sequester

Four months after the sequester cuts took effect, the doom and gloom that some Democrats predicted hasn't exactly come to pass.

While government agencies maintain that the across-the-board reductions have been a strain on their operations, some officials initially made it sound like the $85 billion in cuts would decimate the government.

They warned as many as a million federal employees would be furloughed for up to a month without pay. They warned it would hit the military, law enforcement, education, health services and other areas of government -- especially air travel because air traffic controllers would face furlough too.

But in late April, when airport traffic actually did get bad -- right before a weeklong congressional recess -- lawmakers quickly lifted the mandatory across-the-board rule. In doing so, they let the Federal Aviation Administration shift money from other accounts so the air traffic controllers could stay on the job.

Other agencies took similar steps, according to The Washington Post.

Instead of furloughing FBI and federal prison staff, the Justice Department used money from programs that either never began, or that ended under-budget.

Border Patrol, the Coast Guard and others postponed certain maintenance projects, eliminated bonuses and generally did some belt-tightening.

In doing so, many of these agencies were able to avoid the worst-case scenario that lawmakers and some members of the Obama administration predicted.

But the dire warnings are expected to resurface, as lawmakers grapple with next year's spending bills.

Congress technically has three months to pass a budget in order to avoid a government shutdown. This time, the mandatory spending cuts are supposed to total $109 billion for the next fiscal year.

Fox News' Carl Cameron contributed to this report.