UW-Madison expert explains possible government shutdown impact - WQOW TV: Eau Claire, WI NEWS18 News, Weather, and Sports

UW-Madison expert explains possible government shutdown impact


MADISON (WKOW) -- As the clock ticks down with no compromise in sight, many are left wondering what'll happen if no budget passes by September 30th.

"They're gonna find it a lot more difficult to do certain things if the government shutdown actually occurs," UW-Madison Professor of Public Affairs Donald Moynihan says. He says entitlement services, like Social Security and Medicaid, for those already enrolled won't be affected. But signing up could become very difficult, with non-essential federal workers furloughed.

"People who want to travel here from other countries won't be able to get visas, people who might want to go to the national parks won't be able to go," Moynihan says.

The U.S. Postal Service service, IRS, and national security agencies are among the services considered "essential."

But federal loans and grants, which the University of Wisconsin relies on heavily, could become unavailable. "If you're trying to apply for a grant for research, its going to be impossible to do so," he says.

So what about the government agencies that are a mix of federal, state and local provisions? Moynihan says the federal counterpart could become unreachable. That could cause confusion and backlogs across the board.

Madison Mayor Paul Soglin's office says the short term impact would be minimal but a longer shutdown could affect city programs that rely on federal money like public housing.

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