The U.S. government has been on a shutdown since December 22, 2018 after President Donald Trump and Democrats failed to agree on the President’s request for funding a wall along the U.S./Mexico border.
So, what does this shutdown mean for the rest of us? Here are two potential impacts you could be feeling:
According to The Washington Post, on Monday, January 7th, the White House “directed the Internal Revenue Service to pay tax refunds to millions of Americans during the federal shutdown, marking its most dramatic reversal yet of past legal precedent as officials scramble to contain public backlash from the funding lapse.”
The IRS is currently operating with only 10% of its staff so it may be difficult for businesses (and individuals) to get any questions about their filings answered. While refunds shouldn’t be delayed, the legality of issuing refunds during the shutdown may be questionable under the Antideficiency Act.
Energy & Mining Work
The Bureau of Land Management is still accepting permit applications for energy and mining related purposes since the agency deems permit approvals “an exempted activity during a lapse in appropriations.”
While the Bureau of Land Management has shutdown visitor centers, public restrooms, and more, many are asking why the oil and gas industry isn’t locked out as well.
According to The Washington Post, a Bureau of Land Management official sent out an email on Monday, January 7th, stating “that the agency is continuing to process permit applications because they are an ‘exempted activity during a lapse in appropriations.'”
Unfortunately, there are many other effects being felt by those reliant on the government for paychecks or aid. Currently, there is no projected timeline for when we can expect the shutdown to come to an end.