Central Texas feels the impact of government shutdown
Central Texas is beginning to feel the impact of the partial government shutdown as the standoff continues over funding for a border wall.
U.S. Department of Agriculture offices in Temple were closed Friday as a result of the shutdown.
A sign on the door of the W.R. Poage Federal Building says, "The U.S. Department of Agriculture office is currently closed due to the lapse in federal government funding. The office will reopen once Congress restores funding".
The shutdown, which started on Dec. 22, has idled hundreds of thousands of federal workers and hundreds of thousands of others are still working, but at least temporarily without pay.
A report prepared by the staff by Senate Appropriations Committee Vice Chairman Patrick Leahy, D-Vt., projects that the USDA will “shutter every local and state farm service center across the U.S.”
The Associated Press reported Friday that the shutdown could complicate things for producers seeking federal payments from the $12 billion set aside in aid for farmers hit by tariffs.
The agency assured farmers last week that direct payments would continue during the first week of the shutdown, but those payments will soon be suspended for farmers who haven’t certified production and farm loans and disaster assistance would also be on hold, AP reports.
The government is offering advice and resources to federal employees impacted by the shutdown including sample letters to submit to landlords, banks, mortgage companies and creditors.