Government shutdown 2018: What will close and who still needs to work

Jim Lo Scalzo  EPA via Sgutterstock

Jim Lo Scalzo EPA via Sgutterstock

But with President Donald Trump and Congress at odds over a Senate-approved funding bill, federal agencies are gearing up for a possible partial government shutdown beginning at midnight Friday. And Trump has warned that a closure could drag on "for a very long time".

The shutdown will primarily impact seven agencies which have not been funded and run out of money at midnight Friday: Homeland Security, Transportation, Commerce, Interior, Agriculture, Housing and Urban Development and Justice.

Of the 245,000 people who work under the department's umbrella, almost 213,000 have been deemed essential, according to the department's contingency plan. Almost 90 percent of the Homeland Security staff is deemed essential.

Social Security checks will still go out. Doctors and hospitals will receive their Medicare and Medicaid reimbursements.

The US National Parks will generally remain open with a skeleton staff, though an alert posted on the website of the National Park Service said some parks are closed completely. The Federal Emergency Management Agency can continue to respond to disasters. Federal workers considered essential must work through the shutdown, but neither they nor the furloughed workers would get paid until after the shutdown ends.

Passports and getting tax information from the IRS are two items that can not be done as the State Department and IRS services are impacted by a partial shutdown.

But hundreds of thousands of federal workers will be forced off the job, and some services will go dark.

This is the 21st shutdown in United States history since the 19070s.

The Smithsonian Institutiontweeted that it will continue operation of its museums, research centers and the National Zoo through January 1.

Federal national parks and forests will also be affected.

At the Statue of Liberty and Ellis Island, it was business as usual, thanks to funding from NY state.

Allow extra time if traveling during busy holiday season
Over the next two weeks, about 46 million people are expected to fly this holiday season, which is more than 5% from past year . The vast majority of those people - about 7.7 million - are expected to travel by vehicle , according to the Auto Club.

But after that, workers will have to wait for Congress to pass legislation to provide back pay.

Late Friday, Mulvaney sent agency heads a memorandum telling them to "execute plans for an orderly shutdown". The House seems sure to follow suit.

Presumably this means that the Christmas Eve holiday will not be affected since it was authorized and enacted via executive order from the president.

Federal workers are exempted from furloughs if their jobs are national security-related or if they perform essential activities that "protect life and property".

More than 420,000 federal employees will have to work without pay, according to a report from the Senate Appropriations Committee.

Of the department's 7,500 employees, only 343 are expected to work.

Meanwhile, more than 380,000 employees will be furloughed - including almost all of NASA and Housing and Urban Development and 41,000 Commerce Department employees.

The National Park Service, under the umbrella of the Interior Department, will have a skeleton staff.

Among those set to be furloughed: 52,000 staffers at the Internal Revenue Service, slowing analysis and collection of hundreds of thousands of tax returns and audits.

That's the official language released by the White House this week in a four-page contingency plan that spells out the contours of every last lump of coal the shutdown will be delivering to federal employees in the days and possibly weeks ahead. During President Ronald Reagan's two terms, there were six shutdowns, typically just one or two days apiece.

This is the first time in 40 years that the government has been closed three times in a year.

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