Is the Government Going to Shut Down 2021? Through March 11th, the government will be financed thanks to legislation passed by Congress. The vote was held just one day before the federal government’s financing was set to run out on February 18, preventing yet another period of inactivity.
The temporary funding bill is regarded as a bilateral success and gives legislators more time to resume talks on a full-year spending package.
In the absence of a long-term funding agreement, Congress has already approved a third extension. The first occurred in late September when the budget for the previous year was about to expire; MPs passed a short-term spending deal that lasted until early December, at which point the deadline was once more postponed until February.
Millions of government employees would have lost their jobs and paychecks if the new financing agreement hadn’t been approved. A shutdown would be particularly uncomfortable given the current tension at the Russia-Ukraine border.
But it won’t be long before we’re talking about the next potential shutdown. In only a few weeks, lawmakers will have to approve funds once more. It is rumored that they plan to pass longer-term legislation at that time.
We never know what might happen with Congress, as with everything else, though. If Congress doesn’t meet the next spending deadline. The following could happen during a shutdown.
Four Services That a Government Shutdown Might Affect
Is the Government Going to Shut Down 2021? Nonessential federal functions are suspended during a shutdown until new funding legislation is approved and signed into law. Each government department has a unique shutdown plan that details whether its operations can continue during the shutdown and whether it will be necessary to furlough personnel.
Many programs are exempt from a government shutdown, according to the Committee for a Responsible Federal Budget (CRFB). Many services would, however, experience negative effects that would be passed on to regular Americans. The top four are listed below.
1: Wait times at the IRS
The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) would be unable to validate Social Security numbers and income during a government closure. It would also find it challenging to promptly address compliance issues and respond to taxpayer inquiries.
Press secretary Jen Psaki stated that even if a shutdown occurred and the majority of the IRS staff were furloughed, the organization would still be required to process tax returns during the September 2021 scramble to enact government financing. If the government runs out of money. That is probably what would happen presently.
2: Problems with Food Stamp Delivery
Is the Government Going to Shut Down 2021? Families coping with the financial effects of the epidemic have relied heavily on the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP), also known as food stamps.
A government shutdown might prevent the distribution of food assistance even though funding wouldn’t be reduced. The CRFB claims that prior continuing resolutions only permitted the payments to be distributed for the first 30 days of closure.
Families with little resources might be forced to reduce their grocery budgets if a shutdown lasts longer.
3: Veterans Affairs and Social Security won’t be processing any new applications
Is the Government Going to Shut Down 2021? A government shutdown would not have an impact on people now receiving Social Security benefits.
However, during a government shutdown, no fresh applications or claims for federal benefits, such as Social Security or Veterans Affairs payments, would be handled, potentially delaying the receipt of first payments.
4: The closure of National Parks and Monuments
During the epidemic, national parks have proven to be a very popular haven; in 2021, Yellowstone set monthly visitation records.
A government shutdown, though, would ruin many Americans’ outdoor plans. More than 300 parks, national monuments, and other locations were closed during the 2013 government shutdown (though many remained open during the 2018-2019 shutdown, albeit with no visitor services or maintenance).
National parks and monuments may not stay open if there is another shutdown.
Why did we have to endure another shutdown?
Since early October, Congress has been passing short-term solutions to keep the government operating. The temporary fixes have bought lawmakers more time as they continue to disagree over the specifics of a long-term financing deal.
Is the Government Going to Shut Down 2021? The nation is still coping with the coronavirus outbreak on top of the political upheaval. The National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases director, Dr. Anthony Fauci, has previously stated that a pandemic would be a bad moment for a government shutdown.
In a September interview with The Washington Post, Fauci remarked, “The worst time in the world we want to shut down the government is in the middle of a pandemic where we have 140,000 people a day being infected and 2,000 people a day dying”. “At that point, you want the government to be tackling this at full speed”.
Although the Omicron variety of Covid-19, which is extremely contagious, appears to be declining, President Joe Biden recently noted that the number of deaths from the epidemic in the United States has reached 900,000.
Between 2018 and 2019, there was the longest government shutdown in history, which lasted 35 days. When former President Donald Trump refused to sign a bill providing financing for the government unless it included funds for a $5.7 billion wall between the United States and Mexico, the struggle got started.
During that time, which was the holiday season, an estimated 800,000 federal employees and 1.2 million contractors were not paid. Some of these employees were so badly affected that they applied for unemployment benefits.
Why there is now so much talk of a shutdown?
Is the Government Going to Shut Down 2021? Finding compromises on numerous measures has grown increasingly difficult in recent years due to the growing polarization of Congress. Not simply because members desire to take political positions, but also because of this fact, passing spending legislation has become more challenging. Spending legislation is frequently utilized to solve other policy issues, which can make these measures more controversial. This practice is common because polarization has resulted in lawmakers passing fewer bills overall.
According to Molly Reynolds, a senior fellow of governance studies at the Brookings Institution. As Congress has concentrated more of its legislative activity on fewer significant, must-pass measures. Those bills bear an increasing amount of political disputes in Congress.
For instance, Republicans have objected to Democrats’ proposals to increase financing for climate-related initiatives during the current round of appropriations talks. Many of these crucial spending votes are decided at the last minute each time there is a shutdown deadline as a result of the divisiveness and procrastination of Congress.
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