The possibility of a government shutdown is less than 24 hours from becoming a reality.
If this happens, where will its impact be felt?
--More than 800,000 federal workers considered "non-essential" would be furloughed, including almost half of the civilian employees working for the Department of Defense. Federal workers essential to public safety and property protection will continue to work. Furloughed workers have been paid retroactively in past shutdowns, although there's no guarantee that will happen this time.
--Active-duty military would still report to duty, but will see their paychecks put on hold until the shutdown is over. *UPDATE FROM THE ASSOCIATED PRESS: The Senate has adopted a bill to pay members of the military in case the government shuts down. The unanimous voice vote Monday sends the legislation to the White House for President Barack Obama's signature.
--National parks, national museums and national zoos would close.
--Passport offices would close.
--Applications for government-insured mortgages and small business loans would be on hold.
--Processing of gun permits will be put on hold.
--Housing loans from the Federal Housing Administration, Veteran's Administration and U.S. Department of Agriculture will not be processed, according to CNN Money. Loans purchased and secured by Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac will not be affected.
--Head Start grants that expire on Oct. 1 will not be renewed, and others would follow depending on how long the shutdown is prolonged. If the grants expire, that could prevent those programs from serving kids.
The following areas should not see any impact:
--Those needing federal disaster relief assistance will continue to receive it. However, certain rebuilding projects related to disasters (such as the Colorado floods) could see some delays.
--Essential services such as air traffic control, Medicare, law enforcement agencies and food inspections will continue.
--Federal prisons will remain open.
--Mail delivery will be uninterrupted.
--Social Security checks will still be processed, although there could be delays.
--Veterans will still receive benefits, but like with Social Security, there could be delays.
--Taxes: expect to still be paying them!
--The implementation of the Affordable Care Act--despite being the leading reason for the budget showdown in Washington. Republicans in the House keep trying to pass a federal spending bill that defunds the controversial health care act; Democrats in the Senate have killed every spending bill that comes from the House.
The law is not actually tied to government funding; it's being used as leverage in the latest round of spending talks.
--Congress: members of Congress are exempt from the furloughs that the shutdown would bring on.
If the government does fail to pass a spending bill, the government will shut down at 12:01 a.m. Tuesday. This will be the 18th shutdown since 1976.
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