How a partial government shutdown affects the Northwest
Congress and the Trump administration failed to broker a deal to fund the government Friday night, triggering a partial government shutdown, but there's solace for the Pacific Northwest.
Based on check-ins with federal agencies here, the local effects of a partial federal government shutdown would likely be limited.
Compared to prior government shutdowns, this one affects fewer agencies. Regional offices of federal agencies had scant details as of Friday afternoon about the timing and impacts of a partial shutdown. They were waiting for direction from their headquarters, which in turn were waiting to see if Congress and Trump administration could strike an 11th-hour deal to resolve an impasse over funding of the president's proposed wall along the U.S.-Mexico border.
National parks, however, would be affected. The contingency plan for the National Park Service says to stop plowing roads. Given the current wintry weather, that would close Crater Lake and Mount Rainier national parks in short order. Fort Clatsop would be likely to close too.
"As a general rule, if a facility or area is locked or secured during non-business hours (buildings, gated parking lots, etc.) it should be locked or secured for the duration of the shutdown," read the guidance published by the National Park Service headquarters office.
The National Park Service and U.S. Forest Service contingency plans say public roads, lookouts and trails can remain open to visitors as long as they're safe with no rangers around.
"Access to Forest Service land is still going to be there," said Mount Baker-Snoqualmie National Forest spokesperson Colton Whitworth by phone on Friday. "It'll just be offices, visitor centers and ranger stations that will be closed."
Oregon Public Broadcasting is a news partner of the Portland Tribune. You can read the rest of their story at https://tinyurl.com/ycgrnnm6.