Government shutdown in Washington, D.C. slowing down business in Ohio

CINCINNATI -- As the government shutdown drags on in Washington, D.C., the effects are starting to be felt by more and more people across the Tri-State.

As the country pushed through Day 10 of its national fiscal impasse on Thursday, Mayor Mark Mallory and members of City Council came together to push for an end to the shutdown.

Mallory says the conflict in the nation’s capital is unacceptable and needs to end.

"It is unacceptable to hold the country's economy hostage over issues that have been fought about, and issues where votes were taken and issues that were lost," he said.

Mallory said 52,000 federal workers are furloughed in Ohio. In addition to hurting the workers and their families, he said, the shutdown is costing local governments much needed tax revenue. 

The mayor says the state has lost $2 million in revenue that is usually generated by visits to the state’s national parks.

All 401 national park units across the country - including such icons as the Grand Canyon and Yosemite and Zion national parks - have been closed since Oct. 1 because of the partial government shutdown, according to the Associated Press.

In addition to tourism money, more than 20,000 National Park Service employees have been furloughed.

The Obama administration made a nominal concession to the the country's governors Thursday by announcing it will allow some national parks  to reopen. But that can only happen, the administration stated, if the states use their own money to pay for park operations.

If the shutdown doesn’t end by the end of the month, Vice Mayor Roxanne Qualls says the city won’t be able to fund the Women, Infants and Children (WIC) program .

"You have the prospect that if the shutdown doesn't end by the end of the month, women and children who are dependent upon the WIC program will basically not have any support and children literally going hungry," she said.

On Wednesday, 9 On Your Side reported WIC is running on supplemental funds to carry it over until Congress ends its stalemate.

"If there's not any decisions made by Oct. 31, WIC will cease,” Director Betsy Buchanan said. “There will be no more and there's not really a program that can take its place."

And what happens to WIC's 45 employees?

“They’re out of a job basically,” Buchanan said.

In addition to government employees, small businesses are also feeling the economic strain from the shutdown. The Small Business Administration  is currently shut down and council member Wendell Young says that's affecting local businesses from getting loans. 

Are you starting to feel the stress of the shutdown? Leave you story in the comment section below.

 

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The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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