Here's how a government shutdown can affect the Central Valley

Gabe Ferris Image
Friday, September 29, 2023
Here's how the government shutdown can affect the Central Valley
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From federal workers to government assistance programs -- a shutdown would impact many here in the Central Valley.

FRESNO, Calif. (KFSN) -- On Friday, the U.S. House of Representatives voted on a short-term bill that would have kept the government open for another month.

But the last-ditch effort by Republican House Speaker Kevin McCarthy failed.

RELATED: House fails to pass short-term spending bill that would keep government open through Oct. 31

21 hard-line members of his own party voted against it. They said they didn't want a short-term solution.

"Keep working and make sure we solve this," McCarthy said.

For House Democrats, it was a non-starter because of spending cuts.

In an interview with Action News, Fresno's representative Jim Costa called for bipartisan compromise to keep the government open.

"This proposal to try to avoid a government shutdown was not in full faith in keeping the word of the commitment that was made in May that put caps on government spending," Costa said.

Republican Congressman John Duarte of Modesto represents the 13th District, which covers portions of Merced and Fresno Counties.

He voted for today's short-term solution -- and told Action News he's ready to work through the weekend to keep the government open.

"We need to keep this process moving forward, and we all need to be looking at the big picture of what's good for America right now," Duarte said.

A government shutdown would cost millions, and the impacts would be far-reaching -- including here in the Central Valley.

Yosemite and many other National Parks would close. The White House warns that funds for some assistance programs could dry up in a matter of days.

RELATED: From Social Security to travel: Everything to know about a government shutdown

And many federal employees would be furloughed or forced to work without pay until the government re-opens.

Aaron McGlothin works at the federal prison in Mendota. As an essential worker, he says he's required to work through the possible shutdown.

"We don't get our paychecks. We know, eventually, we will get paid, but that doesn't pay our current bills we have to pay. Something's gotta happen," McGlothin said.

As for the federal assistance programs here in the Central Valley, the California Department of Public Health tells Actoin News that they have enough funding to ensure WIC services remain active for the time being.

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