Murkowski: Shutdown Should Not Happen Again

Senator Co-Sponsors Bill to Avoid Another Federal Shutdown

WASHINGTON, DC — Senator Lisa Murkowski today announced she is co-sponsoring the bipartisan End Government Shutdown Act, after spending the recent Alaska work period talking with Alaskans statewide who were impacted by the 16 day federal government shutdown.  The legislation would create a trigger to fund the government if a fiscal year ended without a new funding bill passed by Congress.

“When the federal government shuts down, the effects are felt by not just Alaskans who are federal employees, but the ripple effect spreads throughout the state to those who rely on government services, or simply interact or count on the federal workforce for their own livelihood,” said Murkowski.  “Whether you’re an air taxi operator waiting on a permit from the FAA, a crab fisherman awaiting allocation limits from NOAA, a forester in the Tongass told to shut down logging operations or a family shut out of a long-awaited trip to a national park, a government shutdown benefits no one and causes turmoil and chaos across the spectrum.”

The End Government Shutdowns Act would greatly increase certainty for federal employees and all those impacted by potential shutdowns by extending funding at current levels for 120 days if a funding bill is not passed by Congress in time for the next fiscal year.  If lawmakers are not able to agree upon funding levels after 120 days, funding levels would be cut one percent across the board – and then one percent again every 90 days without a Congressional agreement.

Senator Murkowski was one of the most outspoken critics of the shutdown, and was lauded for her bipartisan work in helping build a solution to end the shutdown impasse earlier this month.  When she returned to Alaska, Murkowski made it a point to meet with as many Alaskans as possible who were impacted by the government closure – whether federal employees or those impacted by the ripple impacts statewide.