Federal Shutdown Has Local Impact

By: Candace Barnette Email
By: Candace Barnette Email

Lauderdale County, Miss. There has been local impact from the federal government shutdown. On the plus side, the mail will still be delivered and recipients won't miss their Social Security checks.

The shutdown began at midnight after Congress and the president could not come to a budget agreement. Both sides are blaming the other.

Meridian Naval Air Station and the 186th Air Refueling Wing are being impacted differently by this government shutdown.

Just over 100 personnel were furloughed at the Navy base. Those employees were asked to go home Tuesday after finishing up any last-minute business.

But another category of employees will continue working at NAS, those who are exempt because they support mission-critical functions. But as of now, those employees are working without pay.

The Navy base will continue missions as per usual, but the Air Guard base is a different story.

"Basically we're shut down for operations," said base commander, Col. Franklin Chalk. "It has affected about 60 percent of the base populace. Technicians and state employees, they were furloughed today around 12 o'clock this afternoon."

In the meantime, active guard personnel who are exempt are just working to maintain the base until a resolution is reached.

The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers at Okatibbee Lake was also hit hard by the shutdown.

Only four employees remain to handle essential tasks at the park. They are working under the assumption they will be compensated at a later date.

Except for Okatibbee Water Park, the entire lake is closed to the public.


Comments are posted from viewers like you and do not always reflect the views of this station.
powered by Disqus
WTOK-TV 815 23rd Ave Meridian, Ms. 39301 Phone: (601) 693-1441
Gray Television, Inc. - Copyright © 2002-2014 - Designed by Gray Digital Media - Powered by Clickability 226040891 - wtok.com/a?a=226040891