Thousands of civilian employees at Tinker Air Force Base are being furloughed and the national Storm Prediction Center is cutting down on its communication to the public as the federal government faces its first full day of a partial shutdown.
Officials at Tinker Air Force Base say about 2,900 of 14,000 civilian employees have been furloughed until federal funding is resumed. Nearly 700 federal technicians at the Oklahoma National Guard have also been furloughed.
Thousands of federal workers in Oklahoma face furloughs and U.S. government services have been limited by the shutdown that began at midnight Oct. 1.
The shutdown also means national parks and recreation areas at federally run lakes are closed. That means no camping, fishing, boating or swimming at Eufaula, Texoma and Tenkiller, at least at U.S. Army Corps of Engineers facilities.
Oklahoma is one of 19 states with compensation commissions designed to “…provide independent and impartial recommendations” on lawmakers’ pay, according to the National Conference of State Legislatures (NCSL).
More than 140 navigators have been hired in Oklahoma and are prepared to help people on Tuesday with questions about the federal marketplace. That is the first day that consumers can begin shopping, comparing and buying health insurance plans online or in person with the help of trained navigators and counselors.
Tuesday morning, the marketplace website noted that heavy traffic was making the page slow to load. The Oklahoma page took several minutes but eventually advanced to a log-in screen.
Oklahoma U.S. Rep. Markwayne Mullin says he'll give back his salary to the U.S. Treasury during the government shutdown.
The freshman Republican says his staff members have been deemed essential and will continue handling calls from constituents during the shutdown. A partial shutdown went into place Tuesday as the U.S. House and Senate were unable to reach an agreement over a temporary funding bill.
Originally published on Tue October 8, 2013 1:08 pm
Update at 8:18 p.m. ET. Impasse:
As first day of a federal government shutdown came to a close, Congress was not any closer to a resolution.
Case in point: Republicans in the House proposed three bills that would have reopened national parks, the Department of Veteran's Affairs and kept the D.C. government afloat. But all three bills didn't even make it out of the House.
A spokesman for Oklahoma's Department of Human Services says the agency is taking a "wait and see" approach when it comes to determining what effect a government shutdown could have on the agency.
Mark Beutler says most the programs using federal money are reimbursed by the government. He says that means that if the government does shut down Tuesday, it will not affect DHS immediately. He says DHS has enough cash on hand for the time being and operations will be business as usual through the rest of the week.
More than three years after President Obama's Affordable Care Act was signed into law, Oklahomans without health insurance can finally start shopping for coverage.
The long-anticipated opening of the insurance marketplace will occur Tuesday in spite of bitter opposition to the health care overhaul law by Oklahoma's highest elected officials, including Gov. Mary Fallin.