I’m embarrassed to say that up until Monday, I didn’t even know what a government shutdown was. I know it’s sad, especially for a recent college graduate who has done a substantial amount of research on American Politics. I guess I probably skipped the day we discussed government shutdowns… or maybe I was sleep in class. Let’s keep that between you and me. But when I first heard about the government shut down, I kind of panicked. I mean for someone who is unfamiliar with that part of American politics, a government shutdown sounds really scary.
For some reason I had this vision in my head of like complete chaos. People would be rioting in all the major cities. The U.S. would encourage everyone to stay in their homes. Now that I am fully educated on what a government shut down is, my little vision of what I thought it was seems very ridiculous. I’m laughing about it as I write this. I guess I’ve been watching too many apocalyptic thrillers
So I ended up learning something new this week. I’m sure there’s some other twenty somethings out there who have no clue what a government shut down is. So let me fill you in. Here’s what you should know about the government shut down.
What is a Government Shut Down?
Congress role is to pass spending bills to fund the government. A government shut down occurs when congress can not come to a consensus on a spending plan for the next fiscal year. The problem with this years’ spending plan is that Republicans are trying to defund Obama Care which is conflicting with coming to an agreement.
Essential Employees will continue to work
Those employees who will be considered essential are those workers that the government absolutely needs in order to function. Military workers, air traffic controllers just to name a few will continue working. These workers won’t be paid during the shutdown but would be paid after. However, U.S. military will continue to get paid since Obama signed a last minute bill which will allow them to continue to receive paychecks.
41% of Federal Employees will be Furloughed
This basically means that there are currently a ton of government employees are on a leave of absence and are not getting paid. Some of these employees include food inspectors and IRS workers are some of the federal government employees that are currently on leave. The good thing is if you were going to get audited now it’s delayed. I’m just trying to find a bright side to all this folks.
All federally funded national parks and monuments are currently shutdown. This includes the Grand Canyon, the National Mall, and the Statue of Liberty.
Permits and Passports
No gun permits will be issued. Some people have been saying that passports will not be issued but I have read in several sources that they will still be issued to applicants. The fees for those services to pay for themselves. But if the government exhausts the funds for passports then passports will be affected by the government shutdown.
Courts will continue to operate during the shut down. After ten days if the shut down is active then judiciary employees will then be put on a furlough.
I’ve covered most of the major points of the government shutdown. I think it’s important to be keep up with what’s going on with our government. It may seem like things don’t effect you but as long as your a resident of this country, then the government’s decisions affect you. I will be the first to admit that I have been neglecting to keep up with the news and politics lately, but I will definitely be keeping track of this shutdown.