Each cabinet-level department and federal agency was required to identify essential personnel and determine which operations would continue if no deal were reached by Tuesday, the first day of the new fiscal year.
Although huge parts of the federal bureaucracy could be forced to close, many government functions would continue.
Senior Pentagon officials said on Friday that the more than 1.3 million active military personnel would remain on duty during a shutdown but would probably not receive their paychecks until a spending agreement was reached. The service members and civilians who stay on the job would be categorized as essential to the protection of life and property and to national security.
About half of the Defense Department’s approximately 800,000 civilian employees would be furloughed without pay.
The Food and Drug Administration would continue some vital activities, like product recalls and the inspection of imports, but would curtail many other food safety activities.
National parks and their visitor centers would be closed, but other Interior Department operations would carry on. Approximately 500 Fish and Wildlife Service employees, whose salaries are paid by a permanent appropriation, would continue caring for animals at parks and hatcheries. At the United States Geological Survey, employees would continue to monitor equipment to forecast floods or detect earthquakes and volcano activity. Native Americans would continue to receive benefits payments, and the Bureau of Indian Education would operate its schools.
At my office, things will go on as usual because we’re a local educational agency and our federal funds have already been appropriated or don’t need Congressional approval. But we’ll see if we can get anyone at the U.S. Department of Education to answer the phone.