Friday marks 21 days into the partial government shutdown, with little sign of resolution. Earlier this week, President Donald Trump made a prime-time appeal to fund the border wall, which is the sticking point. On Wednesday, he walked out of a meeting with congressional leaders. Democrats said Trump threw a "temper tantrum."
That impasse in Washington reverberates across Georgia, which is home to more than 71,000 civilian employees – around four percent of the federal workforce, according to the Office of Personnel Management. Many, like Transportation Security Administration employees, are working without pay. Others, including Federal Aviation Administration and Food and Drug Administration inspectors, National Park Service and Internal Revenue Service employees are furloughed until a resolution is reached.
Georgia’s nine military bases and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention in Atlanta remain open, thanks to spending bills passed by Congress to fund the Pentagon and Health and Human Services.
Georgia farmers, many already awaiting federal aid for crops devastated by Hurricane Michael, along with promised relief funds for those who lost markets due to retaliatory tariffs, are also affected. We spoke with Mark Peele, who is a cotton grower and president of the South Georgia Gin Company in Berrien County.
The Alcohol and Tobacco Tax and Trade Bureau, which approves all applications for existing businesses that want to distribute new labels of booze as well as businesses just starting up, is also closed. We spoke with Garrett Lockhart of Atlanta Brewing Company – the oldest craft brewery in Georgia – about what it could cost his business.