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Impact of government shutdown felt around the country

7:31 AM, Oct 8, 2013   |    comments
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Image courtesy: Associated Press

GRAND RAPIDS (WZZM) - Tuesday marks Day 8 of the partial federal government shutdown. Even though thousands of government workers are showing up for work, without pay, the shutdown is started to impact people around the country.

When it first started, one of the biggest questions was how far-reaching would impact of the shutdown be. We are starting to see the answer to that each day it goes on.

When a record-breaking blizzard dumped nearly two feet of snow on Rapids City South Dakota this weekend, meteorologists at the National Weather Service worked to stay on top of the storm.  Of course, their work is deemed "essential." Many people's lives and safety depended on it, but those meteorologists worked long and hard hours, some even crawling over huge snow drifts, all without pay.

1,400 miles away, in Atwater, California, federal correctional officers and other prison staff are also working without the promise of a pay check.  They are among the thousands of federal prison prison workers and support staff hoping to receive retroactive pay once the shutdown is over.

However, it will not cover overtime or missed vacations. They fear if the shutdown lasts too long, it will impact staffing levels and safety.

"We house some of the worst people you can possibly imagine, and our job is to keep them behind bars, and we're more than willing to do that. However, we expect Congress to do their job as well and to pass a budget, so our officers can continue to do what they do," said Donald Martin, AFGE Local 1242 president.

Also, distillery owners in Kentucky cannot open for business despite having federal permits and state licenses. That's because they need the government to approve the labels before they can sell one bottle.

Frustrations continue to build around the country each day the shutdown goes on.

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