George Becerra, Burke: “I’m a furloughed federal employee, home with no pay. I've been proactive; paid all bills up to date in December. I limited holiday spending, didn't splurge. I'm not paying annual memberships due in January to organizations and my HOA. My wife is a government contractor. The solution would be Lindsey Graham. Reopen the government for three weeks. Get people back to work and politicians can hash it out."
Kathryn Oakley, retired Coast Guard, Town of Herndon: ”Our active duty members in the United States Coast Guard get paid every two weeks. The last time was Dec. 31, 2018. For Coast Guard retirees, it is not clear if we will get a check because funds are tied to Appropriations Funding. The Coast Guard is under the U.S. Department of Homeland Security. I went to Navy Federal Credit Union, and they shared information about their Government Shutdown Assistance, 0% APR Loan. I'm not worried about myself. I'm worried about the young men and women in the Coast Guard, working without pay. They cannot get a part-time job.
There are two bills introduced. In the Senate, Bill 21, "Pay Our Coast Guard Act" and in the House of Representatives (HR) 367, "Pay our Coast Guard Parity Act.” We are small and do not have visibility."
Keven Leblanc, Town of Herndon: “Federal employees are no doubt impacted. Federal Contractors suffer significantly. If people on contract can't report, they have to take leave without pay or be furloughed. A shutdown this long can drive small businesses out of business if all their work is tied to Federal contracts. Large companies have shareholders they are accountable to and must maintain a profit. The economic ripples then extend to the larger community, as the economic base no longer has money to buy goods or services or eat at restaurants. For some who live paycheck to paycheck, whether a federal employee, contractor or private employee in a federal-employment concentration, it can mean defaulting on loans or rent, not eating, not getting required medicines or healthcare or the heat and safety from the cold they require.”
Cher Muzyk, Nokesville, Md.: ”I’m the wife of a government attorney who has been furloughed but is deemed essential. He will eventually receive the back pay, but there are bills to pay now. We have a two-month nest egg for payments as long as we cut back. We called the credit union. My solution is simple. I don't understand why the border wall has to be coupled with the budget. Separate those two arguments. Resolve the budget. Get working families paid and back to work. I would support anything, even temporary. Eighty-three percent of Americans are not affected, so there is no sense of urgency. There is a need for a human face on it. The uncertainty is terrifying."
(No photo available) Kevin Powell, Reston: ”It seems like Congress resolved itself to government shutdowns as par for the course. With Trump and a divided Congress, I didn't think it would get better. My action plan has been to limit my spending. As a government contractor, I ran into this in the past. I'm job searching so I can get out of government contracting. The shutdown has impacted my marriage and my family. I wish legislators would think country first, constituents second – those who would vote for them."