What Gets Affected By A Government Shutdown?


Many are wondering who and what gets affected if the government does shut down.

Federal employees deemed non-essential—in other words, those whose jobs don’t involve keeping the nation safe and operational—will be furloughed. Federal employees who do work through the shutdown will not be paid until the government is up and running again. The decision as to who is excepted in the shutdown and who is furloughed is decided by employers. Border patrol agents and TSA employees will continue working.

The government shutdown could impact more than 53,000 federal employees in Colorado.

West Virginia Democratic Sen. Joe Manchin has pledged to give up his salary if the government shuts down, and sent a letter to his fellow senators Thursday to do the same. Similar legislation asking those in Congress to give up their salaries in a shutdown previously failed.

Social Security recipients would largely remain unaffected by a shutdown. Medicare and Medicaid checks would also still go out, but new applications and claims will not be processed.

The IRS would have to suspend tax audits, but the April tax deadline will remain unchanged. The paper processing of tax refunds would also be halted during the shutdown.

Military operations will not stop, but pay will—in the case of a government shutdown, troops will not get paid until the government reopens. If the government does shut down after midnight Friday, the next paycheck troops receive would only include one week’s pay versus two, due to the shutdown occurring in the middle of a pay cycle.

Colorado Republican Rep. Doug Lamborn said that lawmakers need to make sure troops get paid so that service members don't have to worry about their families back home.

Veterans will still get benefits, as the money to fund VA services is set aside a year in advance.

Even recreational activities will be impacted by a shutdown—national parks and museums will close.

Colorado Democratic Sen. Mark Udall reportedly wrote House Speaker John Boehner Wednesday, urging him to avoid a shutdown as it might hamper economic recovery. Fifteen moderate Democrats, including Colorado Sen. Michael Bennet, signed the letter.

In speaking out about the prospect of the looming shutdown, President Obama aid that there is "no reason why we should not get an agreement," and has said that the prospect of a shutdown, particularly "because of politics," is "inexcusable."

Boehner has also expressed the desire to avoid a shutdown, saying that while he was "not going to allow the White House and Senate to put us between two bad options," in budget agreements, his goal is to keep the government open.

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Comments are posted from viewers like you and do not always reflect the views of this station.
  • by denise Location: georgia on Apr 10, 2011 at 03:08 PM
    What if you are trying to get disability? Will your chance of being approved be affected?
  • by say on Apr 8, 2011 at 02:28 PM
  • by Adriana Hernandez Location: big lake texas on Apr 8, 2011 at 02:27 PM
    i think the president should step in and say something its not right for the government to do this..
  • by shelby Location: indiana on Apr 7, 2011 at 07:55 PM
    what if you get cash benefits or medicaid? will you be affected??
  • by Sid Location: Colorado Springs on Apr 7, 2011 at 07:54 PM
    Interesting how "American interests" is being used more, almost as if there is no longer any need to hype up the "freedom" rationalization for bombing whoever we want to (or are told to)as the end of US sovereignty draws near. Notice how "endgame" has become the new buzzword used on all the networks. And you thought each network's "reporters" were actually writng this stuff? Endgame, as if an exit strategy was ever importanat before. 10 years later we are making progress and people actually believe this stuff. Who will be the next cartoon character to threaten the US while the US destroys itself?
  • by Fred Location: CS on Apr 7, 2011 at 07:41 PM
    I say we strike back! If the government shuts down I will not report seeing any acts of terrorism in Walmart! No See Something, Say Something for me!
  • by USA! on Apr 7, 2011 at 07:37 PM
    God bless the TSA, yet another agency keeping us free! Good grief! Do all these agencies believe their own publicity?????
  • by Anonymous on Apr 7, 2011 at 06:19 PM
    It's the military will be nice that the military personnel will be taken care of. But what about the rest of the national security people? Who will help us? No one, that's who.
  • by Anonymous on Apr 7, 2011 at 06:16 PM
    This furlough will affect 53,000 federal employees just in colorado wo live paycheck to paycheck and cannot afford to lose a weeks pay or more for that fact, why doesnt congress and the president lose one weeks worth of pay? Their paychecks alone would save more money than the 53,000 employees in colorado, AND they wouldnt even miss the money!!!!!!!!
  • by Anonymous Location: pueblo on Apr 7, 2011 at 06:10 PM
    Im a gov employee and will be furloughed if the budget isnt passed but I want to know why they are allowed to keep one person from each division working, when in fact the one "new" person has less than 6 months in the government but after several years for me and decades for others, we have to leave but he can stay? He is a supervisor and makes more money than us anyway,it would make more sense to keep a lower paid individual if you had to keep someone.
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