Connecticut farmers soon to feel pinch of federal government shutdown


The affects of the pro-longed federal government shutdown are starting to be felt by the Connecticut’s estimated 75,000 federal government employees.  But the ripple down affect could soon be affecting another very hard working segment of the state’s population;  farmers.

The first big impact of the federal shutdown could be felt by some of the state’s 6,000 farms that employ over 20,000 residents. That’s because the U.S. Department of Agriculture is one of the agencies affected by the shutdown and farmers need loans or loan guarantees approved soon to get ready for this year’s plantings.

 “People who are looking to start their field crops in a greenhouse might have employees that are coming on board.  If they don’t have access to capital to pay those employees that could throw things off as it continues a few weeks depending on how long the shutdown lasts,” said Bryan Hurlburt of the Connecticut Farm Bureau.

Some of the state’s 100 dairy farms that put in their loan applications early say their loans were approved before the shutdown but others may not be so lucky.   Many dairy farms plant and grow their own corn for feed and need those loans for this year’s plantings.            

Transportation Security Administration airport screeners at the airports in New York, Connecticut, Rhode Island, and Massachusetts as well as across the country must continue to work without pay. Their average salary is about $800 a week.   No pay for an extended period could bring added stress to the check in lines.

The federal courts in Hartford, New Haven and Bridgeport may start postponing civil cases.   Federal Court employees, including the federal defenders and FBI agents must continue to work with no pay.

While some federal government services are unavailable during the shutdown, it’s reported that Social Security, Medicare, and Medicaid will continue to make payments.

Related Content: Connecticut Department of Labor offers unemployment guidelines for federal workers

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