MOUNTAIN VIEW (KCBS) – A government shutdown would impact everyone from the front gate guards to the scientists who study Mars at the NASA Ames Research Center in Mountain View.
On Monday morning, a long and steady line of cars filed through the main security gate at NASA Ames, but it could be more of a trickle by Tuesday morning if there’s a partial government shutdown. The agency has warned that nearly all of its 18,000 would be placed on unpaid furlough absent a federal budget agreement.
One union official says more than 1,000 AMES Employees could be furloughed for an indefinite period of time. And even the nearby Moffett Field Golf Club is warning customers that the course may be closed.
Only 3% of NASA employees in highly select positions would be allowed to stay on the job – for example those involved with the International Space Station – or those involved in jobs deemed necessary for safety and security.
All across the Bay Area the potential impact is big. Popular attractions like Alcatraz and Muir Woods would shut down and campers at Point Reyes National Seashore can forget their camping plans. Ranges would stay on simply for law enforcement.
“When we talk about being closed that means the visitor centers would be closed, roads that are part of the park system would be closed, the hiking trails,” said John Dell’Osso at Point Reyes National Seashore.
Even things that seem unrelated could take a hit. The Meals on Wheels Program, which provides food to the sick and elderly in their homes, relies on federal reimbursement. That program is already hurting from sequestration cuts.
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