Many Alaskans live their lives by the weather. But how will the government shutdown affect the organizations that provide weather information to the state?
Like other federal agencies, most of the Alaska Region’s 650 Forest Service workers are going on furlough as a result of the Government Shutdown, which began Tuesday. The Forest Service is the biggest federal employer in Petersburg, with about 70 local staffers. Nearly all of them were put on furlough after shutting down both local offices.
Congress has passed a one-year extension of a program that pays out millions of dollars to communities in Alaska near national forest land, like Petersburg.
Citing potential concerns over wolf habitat, Alaska’s Regional Forester has directed Forest Service officials to evaluate new information before moving forward with the Big Thorne timber sale on Prince of Wales Island.
With the help of some Congress members and their staff, who distracted police and brought down the barricades, the veterans made their way into the memorial, as tourists cheered.
In addition to shutdowns of national parks (including Alcatraz Island and Yosemite) and the supplemental nutrition program for women, infants and children, the mandatory furloughs are affecting a wide range of government science and health agencies.
There isn’t even a glint of solution somewhere off on the horizon, NPR’s Mara Liasson says. On Morning Edition, she told host Steve Inskeep that as of Wednesday morning there was “no escape hatch.”
The Forest Service has decided to make changes in its Tongass land management plan.
Funding is secure through December
While essential services will remain, Alaskans will notice some impacts from the federal government shutdown.