TOPEKA (KSNT) – President Joe Biden signed a bill late Saturday night to temporarily avoid a government shutdown. However, there are still questions about how the workforce will be affected.
The bill passed 335-91 in the House before moving through the Senate at an 88-9 vote. It will keep the federal government afloat for the next 45 days while it works to develop its long-term spending plan.
Bill Fiander, a political science professor at Washburn University, said a potential shutdown would have mainly impacted federal employees and programs directly tied to national spending. Even with the extended deadline, Fiander said the next 45 days brings uncertainty.
“We don’t know if every appropriation for every department has been funded in those 45 days or not, Fiander said. “Let’s assume it isn’t, you’re talking again about people not going into work, or working virtually or whatever except for those security-based functions of government.”
Government operations related to public safety would remain functioning during a shutdown, but according to Fiander, many of those employees would be working without pay until the plan is put in place. For now, it’s back-to-business as usual for all government entities while Congress continues to iron out a plan.
Fiander said the important thing to remember is that this is far from being resolved, as the 45-day window is serving as a temporary ‘bandaid’ to keep the government afloat.