/Government Shutdown Updates: Where Things Stand

Government Shutdown Updates: Where Things Stand


Updated Jan. 25

President Trump signed a invoice on Friday evening to reopen the federal authorities for 3 weeks whereas negotiations proceed over tips on how to safe the nation’s southern border. His motion was a shock retreat after a monthlong standoff with Democrats over billions of for his proposed border wall, and outstanding conservative voices criticized the president, utilizing phrases like “weak,” “wimp” and “beta.”

Mr. Trump mentioned in a tweet that the deal was “in no way a concession.” Even so, the subsequent three weeks are anticipated to point out whether or not Mr. Trump can rebound. Read extra right here .

The invoice’s signing restores regular operations at a sequence of federal businesses till Feb. 15, and allows the 800,000 federal employees who’ve been furloughed or compelled to work with out paychecks to receives a commission (although it was not clear precisely when).

The Office of Management and Budget mentioned in a letter to affected businesses and departments Friday that administration ought to put together for an “orderly reopening” and prioritize employees’ pay and advantages.

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When the shutdown began, just over half of the roughly 800,000 federal workers who were left without pay continued to work, including members of the Coast Guard and food safety inspectors. The number of people working grew as the Trump administration reinterpreted longstanding rules, often to the benefit of the president’s base.

Federal workers who have in the past turned down opportunities to enter the lucrative private sector are now feeling less certain about that decision. Some have already left the government or are talking about leaving.

Aviation professionals issued a warning that threats to the safety of the nation’s air travel system were compounding by the day. The airline industry reported that it was losing revenue. The funding freeze also hindered the F.B.I.’s efforts to crack down on child trafficking, violent crime and terrorism.

Furloughed federal employees started part-time jobs with delivery and ride-hailing apps and have applied for other opportunities, such as yoga-instructor positions, to try to make ends meet. Some turned to pawn shops.

Many federal workers have filed for unemployment benefits. In Washington, local programs have sprouted up to support the city’s large, struggling federal work force. Nationally, an informal network of businesses mobilized to ease the pain.

Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross said Thursday that federal workers who had not been paid during the shutdown should take out loans to stay afloat. Furloughed employees balked.

[A typical federal worker missed $5,000 in pay from the shutdown.]

Federal courts, which remained open despite the shutdown, were expected to run out of money by the end of the month. Some courts delayed civil cases, and court-appointed lawyers were not paid at all.

And the shutdown was also felt by cultural institutions. It caused museums in Washington to close and put exhibitions, like the National Gallery of Art’s Tintoretto show, at risk. It even endangered a sculpture that was recently launched into orbit.

The White House acknowledged recently that the shutdown had a far greater toll on the United States economy than previously thought.

Americans remain relatively upbeat about their personal finances, but became increasingly worried about the economy during the shutdown, according to a recent poll conducted for The Times by the online research firm SurveyMonkey.

Low-income Americans whose leases are subsidized by the government worried about their rent because the Department of Housing and Urban Development, which is closed, could not make payments to landlords.

Some of the most vulnerable Americans — including the homeless, older people and those one crisis away from the streets — felt the burden most keenly. Without payments from the Department of Housing and Urban Development, nonprofit groups that support low-income renters were also struggling. Many other social safety net programs were facing similar crises.

Legions of contractors were put out of work and, unlike federal employees working without pay, they have no expectation of recovering the missed wages.



Source link Nytimes.com

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