January 20, 2018 (STL.News) The country sets back and waits for Washington to settle their differences while American workers are fearful for a quick resolution so they can continue to live their lives and support their families.
Various state and/or federal agencies are making comments on their websites that we will monitor and keep you up-to-date.
North Carolina Governor Roy Cooper today issued a statement on the federal government shutdown:
“I am deeply disappointed that Congress and the President are failing to meet the very basic obligation of funding the government. North Carolina families need to know that my administration will work to continue services and soften the blow in our state. Meanwhile the folks in Washington should get back to work.”
FAA statement published today on FAA.Gov
Due to a lapse in funding, the FAA will only continue “exempt” activities such as air traffic control and safety inspections. There will be no impact to safety or safety oversight for the traveling public.
The following statement is attributable to American Geophysical Union (AGU) Executive Director/CEO Chris McEntee:
For the second time in five years, congressional and presidential impasses have resulted in a shutdown of the federal government. The repercussions of this shutdown destabilize scientific federal agencies that are essential to the nation’s economic stability, public health, and national security.
The far-reaching costs of such a shutdown are very real. For example, in 2017 alone, the United States experienced 16 major weather and climate disaster events, resulting in 362 lives lost and, and more than $300 billion dollars in economic damages. If not for the work of federal scientific agencies – including NASA, NOAA, and USGS – these losses could have been far greater. Satellite data from NOAA and NASA, for example, were integral in monitoring and providing early warning to residents of Hurricane Harvey in advance of its landfall in and along the Gulf Coast in late August. During a government shutdown, the dedicated scientists working at these agencies will be unable to make such potentially life-saving information available to the public.
A shutdown also puts at risk the technologies, research, and services that government agencies help to support, and that enable millions of jobs across the nation, not to mention idling the tens of thousands of scientists serving as public servants. We urge our policy leaders to work together to reopen the government and put science and the public servants – who ensure that critical information and data are available – back to work.
Even once the government re-opens, however, science funding and science are still at risk, as budget pressures have forced science agencies overall to operate under funding constraints. To that end, we urge congressional and administration budget negotiators to:
- Reach a bipartisan budget agreement that raises the spending caps and maintains parity between defense and non-defense discretionary spending, so that our national scientific enterprise is not in competition with our national defense.
- Prioritize our nation’s scientific enterprise by robustly investing in our federal science agencies
Complete the FY2018 appropriations process rather than allowing uncertainty and delay to hinder our nation’s scientific enterprise.
- Strong and predictable investment in America’s scientific enterprise remains one of the surest ways to encourage economic growth, increase the safety and security of our nation, and advance our understanding of the world around us. Conversely, without the contributions of scientific research, America would lose its role as global innovation leader, and our economy, national security, and the health and safety of our citizens would suffer.
Reports indicate the shutdown was precipitated by mixed messages made by the President and Congress as legislators attempted to find common ground on immigration policy and linked this to the continuing resolution that just expired. AGU – as a scientific association representing 60,000 Earth and space scientists from 137 countries across the globe – is dedicated to the open exchange of ideas and information; to welcoming scientists and others with a diversity of backgrounds, ideas and approaches, and is committed to equality and inclusiveness. Efforts and rhetoric that set us backwards in these ideals run counter to creating a culture that allows science to thrive and damages the global scientific enterprise.