Federal Government Shuts Down Temporarily; Congress Unable to Agree on Spending Compromise

The federal government has shut down pending congressional approval of legislation to fund continuing operations in the new fiscal year (FY), which began on October 1. The House of Representatives has passed several bills in the last week that would fund the government while delaying implementation of some or all aspects of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA or Obamacare). The Senate has approved legislation to fund the federal government through November 15 without any delay in the PPACA. President Obama has called on Congress to pass legislation that does not delay or defund the PPACA.
The shut down means that most federal programs, agencies, facilities and parks are closed for business. A notice that was posted on the FEMA.gov Assistance to Firefighters Grant program page reads: “Due to the lapse in federal funding, portions of this website may not be updated and some non-disaster assistance transactions submitted via the website may not be processed or responded to until after appropriations are enacted.” As a result of the shut down, the National Fallen Firefighters Memorial Service, which was scheduled to be held last weekend at the National Fire Academy in Emmitsburg, MD, had to be moved. 
Click here to read an article that was published in last week’s Dispatch discussing the status of FY 2014 appropriations for the Assistance to Firefighters Grant program, the Staffing for Adequate Fire and Emergency Response grant program, the U.S. Fire Administration, and the Volunteer Fire Assistance grant program.