As members of Congress press on with their efforts to reach a compromise, the federal government shutdown persists, continuing to seriously impact the operations of public agencies and facilities across the country. The recent decision to cut off funding for so-called "nonessential" functions among governmental departments and institutions has presented a whole slew of obstacles. Out of all these emerging issues, those connected with furloughing employees have affected facilities most. Without having a full staff to help carry out tasks that normally have to get done, managers are now under an incredible amount of pressure as they see their operations come to a sudden halt. Luckily for facilities managers, there may be some encouraging signs that their situation could be improved soon.
Government employees may be granted back pay
Despite Congress' otherwise deadlock when it comes to lifting the government shutdown, one recent exception has been made. According to CBS News, members of the House of Representatives agreed to grant back pay for federal employees currently furloughed due to the government's suspension. This bill was passed with a vote of 407 to 0, showing that the majority of lawmakers from both the Republican and Democratic parties are on board with reducing the negative impact on those out of work because of the shutdown.
"Federal workers keep the Nation safe and secure and provide vital services that support the economic security of American families," said White House representatives, according to CBS News.
By passing this bill, Congress would pay back government facility employees for any work that they have missed. Although there is still no vote in sight when it comes to completely ending the shutdown, this recent event could be an indication of Congress' intention to make this incident easier on facility staff members.
Short-staffed facilities suffer
Any step toward lifting the current suspension would prove beneficial to government organizations, especially if furloughed employees are eventually able to return to work. According to the Fresno Bee, Yosemite National Park and its surrounding facilities have taken a hard hit from the shutdown, having to make do without 600 of its usual park representatives. As a result of being short-staffed, managers have had to cut back on hours of operation. Additionally, they have had to restrict open areas and stop collecting entrance fees.
As Congress seeks to come to an agreement, U.S. facilities managers are trying to scrape by with limited resources. By using a CMMS like FacilityDude's MaintenanceEdge, facilities personnel can monitor and manage necessary tasks. Even though operations are impeded by the shutdown, facilities can use these computerized management tools to get by and prevent their own functions from coming to a standstill.