Government Shutdown

U.S. Capitol Building
Stacy | Flickr

The three-day federal government shutdown has ended and a temporary spending measure funds federal agencies through February 8. Senate Democrats agreed to sign off on the measure after Republican Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell pledged that lawmakers would take up immigration proposals, which held up talks to prevent a shutdown last week. WAMC's Alan Chartock takes your calls on this and more. 

NPCA Photos/flickr

Frustration is growing over the federal government shutdown and approaching deadline for raising the government’s debt ceiling.  Members of a progressive group in Massachusetts that advocates raising taxes on the rich, cutting military spending, and increasing funds for social programs are planning protests. Members of  Budget for All are going to demonstrate today in Boston and on Friday in Northampton.   WAMC’s Pioneer Valley Bureau Chief Paul Tuthill spoke with Marty Nathan, one of the leaders of Budget For All Western Massachusetts.

Corps Of Engineers Closing NE Regulatory Office

Oct 16, 2013

U.S. Army Corps of Engineers says it's temporarily closing its New England regulatory office because of a lack of funds while the federal government is shut down.

The New England district office serves Connecticut, Maine, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, Rhode Island and Vermont. It regulates work, structures and dredging in or near navigable waters and related wetlands.

The office says someone will be available for authorizations of emergency activity.

Dr. Alan Chartock's Morning Commentary

Oct 15, 2013

WAMC political observer Dr. Alan Chartock discusses the possibility of a deal ending the government shutdown and New York state education commissioner John King's decision to suspend forums around the state after a meeting last week in Poughkeepsie that caused quite a stir.

Flickr / 316th Sustainment Command (

A Hudson Valley congresswoman says the government shutdown is affecting a Rockland County vaccine developer. This comes as the U.S. faces default Thursday unless it raises the debt ceiling.

Sean Philpott: Safely Shutdown

Oct 10, 2013

Unless a miracle happens, but the time this commentary airs the US federal government will enter its tenth day of shutdown. Nearly 800,000 workers will remain furloughed, important social service and educational programs will remain unfunded, national parks and monuments will remain closed, and the National Zoo's panda cam will remain offline.

Officials Assess Shutdown's Vt. Impact

Oct 8, 2013
Courtesy VT Governor's Office

Vermont Governor Peter Shumlin says it's time for Congress to stop hampering the state’s fragile economic recovery and find a responsible solution to what he calls a manufactured crisis.

Shumlin was joined by Vermont National Guard officials and others Monday to outline how the federal government shutdown is affecting state. They said an estimated 5,000 federal workers who live in Vermont are seeing reduced hours or furloughs, and a monthly National Guard training weekend affecting 3,000 troops was canceled.

Civilians Back To Work At Fort Drum, West Point

Oct 8, 2013
wikipedia commons

Civilian employees are back to work at Fort Drum and West Point after a week of furloughs stemming from the government shutdown.

U.S. Military Academy spokesman Lt. Col. Webster Wright said most of the academy's 1,422 furloughed civilian employees returned to work on Monday.

The American Federation of Government Employees Local 400 told the Watertown Daily Times that about 325 furloughed medical workers were called back in at Fort Drum. The northern New York post on Sunday night said that all 250 garrison employees were called to return to their work Monday as well.

The big news of the past week has been the shutdown of the federal government.  The rationale for the gridlock has been well reported:  The House Republican Congressional leadership has decided to block funding of the federal government as its leverage to defund, cripple or delay implementation of the health care reform law, the Affordable Care Act.

Dr. Alan Chartock's Morning Commentary

Oct 7, 2013

WAMC political observer Dr. Alan Chartock discusses the ongoing government shutdown in Washington and a New York Times editorial about fixing immigration from the ground up.

Meeropol: Beware Cuts To Medicare Amid Current Crisis

Oct 4, 2013
Michael Meeropol
Michael Meeropol

If this commentary sounds like a broken record, it’s because the folks who are out to gut Medicare  --- the “let’s have a grand bargain and introduce more austerity” crowd --- have returned with a vengeance.   Because of the current stand-off between the President and House Republicans, the two leaders of the failed Simpson-Bowles Commission are back at it again.   Over the summer, the White House has hosted dinners with Senate Republicans in hopes that a new grand bargain can be reached.   Former Senator Alan Simpson and former Clinton Administration Official Erskine Bowles, in a recent OP

West Point Combines Classes Amid Gov't Shutdown

Oct 4, 2013
Robert S. Donovan

Some classes at West Point are being combined or canceled and military faculty members are being forced to fill in for civilian instructors furloughed because of the government shutdown.

U.S. Military Academy officials said Thursday they furloughed 1,422 civilian employees this week, including 132 faculty members.

The academy's faculty is about 70 percent military personnel who are unaffected by the shutdown. But spokesman Lt. Col. Webster Wright says the furloughs are challenging West Point's ability to provide a top-level education to cadets.


As the nation endures day three of the partial federal government shutdown, New York’s congressional representatives from the Hudson Valley say they’re trying to open all the closed doors. 

NY Congressman Requests No Pay During Shutdown

Oct 3, 2013

A New York congressman from the Hudson Valley has requested that his pay be withheld in light of the partial federal government shutdown.

Official: Service Academy Games Will Go On

Oct 3, 2013
The U.S. Army/flickr

A senior defense official says U.S. military academy football teams will be on the field this weekend, despite the ongoing government shutdown.

The official said Wednesday the decision affects this weekend's games only, and future games will be evaluated as events unfold in the coming days.

The teams will be allowed to play because the games are paid for with non-appropriated funds, and have been long planned. Army is scheduled to travel to Boston College this weekend, and Air Force will play at Navy in Annapolis, Md.

U.S. Air Force/Wikimedia Commons Public Domain

The head of the Vermont National Guard says he's postponing the October drill weekend because of the federal government shutdown.


The government shutdown is garnering fierce criticism from Democrats, including Congressman Bill Owens. The Democrat from New York’s 21st district held a conference call with reporters from the region Tuesday afternoon to talk about the potential repercussions.