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[IWS] CRS: Shutdown of the Federal Government: Causes, Processes, and Effects [23 April 2013]

IWS Documented News Service

_______________________________

Institute for Workplace Studies----------------- Professor Samuel B. Bacharach

School of Industrial & Labor Relations-------- Director, Institute for Workplace Studies

Cornell University

16 East 34th Street, 4th floor---------------------- Stuart Basefsky

New York, NY 10016 -------------------------------Director, IWS News Bureau

________________________________________________________________________

 

Congressional Research Service (CRS)

 

Shutdown of the Federal Government: Causes, Processes, and Effects

Clinton T. Brass, Coordinator, Specialist in Government Organization and Management

April 23, 2013

http://www.fas.org/sgp/crs/misc/RL34680.pdf

[full-text, 23 pages]

 

Summary

When federal agencies and programs lack appropriated funding, they experience a funding gap.

Under the Antideficiency Act, they must cease operations, except in certain emergency situations

or when law authorizes continued activity. Failure of the President and Congress to reach

agreement on interim or full-year funding measures occasionally has caused government

shutdowns, the longest of which lasted 21 days, from December 16, 1995, to January 6, 1996.

Government shutdowns have necessitated furloughs of several hundred thousand federal

employees, required cessation or reduction of many government activities, and affected numerous

sectors of the economy. This report discusses the causes, processes, and effects of federal

government shutdowns, including potential issues for Congress.

 

For questions concerning the impact of a shutdown on a specific agency or program,

congressional operations, or judicial operations, please call CRS at 7-5700. See also the “Key

Policy Staff” table at the end of this report.

 

For analysis of potential effects of a shutdown on the Department of Defense, see CRS Report

R41745, Government Shutdown: Operations of the Department of Defense During a Lapse in

Appropriations, by Pat Towell and Amy Belasco.

 

For analysis of the government’s contractual rights and how it could use these in the event of a

shutdown, see CRS Report R42469, Government Procurement in Times of Fiscal Uncertainty, by

Kate M. Manuel and Erika K. Lunder.

 

For discussion of funding gaps, see CRS Report RS20348, Federal Funding Gaps: A Brief

Overview, by Jessica Tollestrup.

 

For an annotated list of historical documents and other resources related to past government

shutdowns, see CRS Report R41759, Past Government Shutdowns: Key Resources, by Jared

Conrad Nagel and Justin Murray.

 

Contents

Budget Negotiations and Choices .................................................................................................... 1

Causes of Federal Shutdowns .......................................................................................................... 2

OMB and Agency Shutdown Processes ........................................................................................... 5

Effects of a Federal Government Shutdown .................................................................................... 8

Effects on Federal Officials and Employees.............................................................................. 8

Executive Branch ................................................................................................................ 9

Legislative Branch............................................................................................................. 10

Judicial Branch .................................................................................................................. 11

Examples of Excepted Activities and Personnel ..................................................................... 11

Effects on Government Operations and Services to the Public ............................................... 13

Illustrations from FY1996 Shutdowns .............................................................................. 13

Effects on Mandatory Spending Programs ........................................................................ 15

More Recent Prospective Statements and Analyses .......................................................... 16

Potential Issues for Congress ......................................................................................................... 17

Quality and Specificity of Agency Planning ........................................................................... 17

Availability of Updated Agency Shutdown Plans ................................................................... 18

Possible National Security Implications .................................................................................. 19

 

Contacts

Author Contact Information........................................................................................................... 20

Acknowledgments ......................................................................................................................... 20

Key Policy Staff ............................................................................................................................. 20

 

 

________________________________________________________________________

This information is provided to subscribers, friends, faculty, students and alumni of the School of Industrial & Labor Relations (ILR). It is a service of the Institute for Workplace Studies (IWS) in New York City. Stuart Basefsky is responsible for the selection of the contents which is intended to keep researchers, companies, workers, and governments aware of the latest information related to ILR disciplines as it becomes available for the purposes of research, understanding and debate. The content does not reflect the opinions or positions of Cornell University, the School of Industrial & Labor Relations, or that of Mr. Basefsky and should not be construed as such. The service is unique in that it provides the original source documentation, via links, behind the news and research of the day. Use of the information provided is unrestricted. However, it is requested that users acknowledge that the information was found via the IWS Documented News Service.

 




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