Locals feel shutdown effects

Five fish hatchery employees furloughed

Jennifer Dong

Staff writer

Twenty-three days have passed since the start of the partial government shutdown on Dec. 22, making it the longest shutdown in U.S. history.

The shutdown occurred as a result of a dispute between President Donald J. Trump and Congress regarding funding to build a wall along the U.S.-Mexico border.

Several local government-administered programs have felt the financial effects of the shutdown, with many federal workers currently furloughed or working without pay.

U.S. Customs and Border Protection press officer Dennis Smith reported that the 15,000 agents of the Border Patrol’s Del Rio sector are on non-paid status but are still required to remain on duty.

Smith notes that there is no guarantee that the agents and personnel will be paid during the shutdown. However, the agents’ health and insurance benefits are still covered.

“It’s difficult, but we all recognize our job is important. We’re expected to fulfill our obligations and duties to support our border security mission,” Smith said. “It’s a little stressful, but we are optimistic that eventually our leaders will reach a resolution.”


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