Area residents brace for government shutdown

The United States government is on the verge of shutting down for the first time in nearly 18 years. The new federal fiscal year starts on October 1 but the Congress has failed to pass legislation authorizing the funding of the federal government. Toledo resident Tyree Daniel knows people who will be adversely affected if there is a government shutdown. "People wouldn't be able to get their checks and pay their bills on time," Mr. Daniel said.

If the government shuts down delivery of US mail, and food stamps would not be affected. Social Security benefits would be paid as Social Security is a mandatory payment program. The Department of Veterans Affairs says it would run out of money at the end of October which could disrupt benefits for 3,6 million veterans. While the government is shut down visitors to national parks will be denied entry. People presently camping on federal grounds would be given two days to leave.

According to the Congressional Research Service there have been 17 shutdowns of the federal government since 1977. The most recent episode was also the longest. The federal government was shut down for 21 days from December 16, 1995 to January 5, 1996.