Impact of Government Shutdown on Small Business, Health

Washington, D.C.—As the government shutdown that began on December 22 stretches into a second week, CNBC reports that there are no clear signs of a budget deal, and the shutdown is expected to continue into 2019.

An overview of the projected impacts of the shutdown was prepared by the Appropriations Committee staff of U.S. Senate Committee on Appropriations Vice Chairman Patrick Leahy. The overview referred to the shutdown as “bad for business” and bad for health. Among the Committee’s projections:

-USDA would close local and state farm service centers, creating a burden for farmers as they plan for the next year’s planting season and new Farm Bill programs.

-More than 30 million small businesses would no longer have access to federally assisted loans and technical assistance.

-Plans by the USDA to distribute $1.2 billion in commodities through The Emergency Food Assistance Program (TEFAP), a service that helps provide food to those in need through soup kitchens, food banks and pantries, would be hindered.

The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is also affected. HuffPost reported that the shutdown could impact EPA’s ability to clean hazardous waste at Superfund sites, as well as to inspect drinking water systems and conduct pesticide reviews.