So the federal government has again shutdown. The last time this happened was during President Clinton’s administration in the mid-1990’s.
Well what does this exactly mean? I’ll tell you.
The federal government is shutdown but that only means that those deemed as non-essential employees are being furloughed. All of the laws, speed limits, and the like still apply, sorry to all those misguided teens on Twitter who think it is now legal to smoke marijuana.
You can still expect your mail on a regular basis since the United States Postal System does not rely on federal funding to operate. The IRS is still open as well so taxes still need to be paid, sorry everyone. If you are looking for a passport, get it quickly. The State Dept. has said they have enough money to keep the process going for a bit, but that won’t last forever.
With the government in shutdown mode, more than 800,000 federal employees are not working and due to their contracts, cannot find supplemental work arrangements. It will be up to Congress after the shutdown ends to vote on whether back pay will be provided.
If you are a military veteran, your benefits will still be received but could come at a delay since there aren’t many employees around to process the payments. The same goes for disability benefits.
For those planning on visiting Washington D.C. and its various monuments, or any other national park within the United States, it is time to make new plans. All national parks and monuments are closed until the shutdown ends – unless you are veterans storming the WWII monument in D.C.
Among other things, NASA is shutdown, the FDA decide on new regulations, clinical trials for new cancer treatments are on hold, and the CDC has discontinued its monitoring of diseases and epidemics.
If anyone is wondering why our government is shutdown, it is simple. Congress failed to pass a resolution on the budget shutting down the government. The major debate around this was funding/de-funding the Affordable Care Act, otherwise known as Obamacare.
I hope this gives a clear, albeit watered down, version of the shutdown. Hopefully things will get cleared up soon so that the federal workers who actually need their jobs and money can get back to work.