Thousands of Texans Furloughed After Government Shutdown

Tuesday, Oct 1, 2013  |  Updated 6:20 PM CDT
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Nearly 40 parks operated by the US Army Corps of Engineers if North Texas are closed because of the government shutdown.

Chris Van Horne, NBC 5 Fort Worth Reporter

Nearly 40 parks operated by the US Army Corps of Engineers if North Texas are closed because of the government shutdown.

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Thousands of federal workers in Texas are set to begin furloughs after Congress plunged the nation into a partial government shutdown.

National parks and the Johnson Space Center in Houston were among the places Tuesday that faced being most affected by the shutdown. Three presidential libraries in Texas are also closing its doors until the budget impasse is over.

According to information on the Bush Center's website, "the George W. Bush Presidential Library and Museum, the federal government-run part of the George W. Bush Presidential Center complex, will be closed during the government shutdown. Other components of the Bush Center, including Café 43, the Museum Store and the George W. Bush Institute will remain open during their normal operating hours."

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Many other federal offices will stay open as usual. That includes criminal courts and border security agents.

Gov. Rick Perry had directed state agencies to prepare for the shutdown by developing contingency plans.

At Fort Hood and other military bases, military personnel will continue to serve in a "normal duty status," according to an Army press release. Some civilian workers will be furloughed and a large number of services, including the commissary, will be shut down completely or scaled back to a minimum during the duration of the shut down. Military servicemembers will continue to receive pay.

Officials at the Naval Air Station Joint Reserve Base said "roughly half" of the 1600 civilian employees would be furloughed, though they expected to have an exact number by the middle of Tuesday. Stores and non-essential offices on the base are expected to close at noon.

Parks serviced by the Army Corp of Engineers have closed to visitors wanting to go fishing or hiking. At 8 p.m., park rangers are planning to remove any campers that are still on the property.

“The Fort Worth District regrets the impacts these closures might have on the numerous patrons who recreate at our facilities, and we are working to keep the public fully informed about the availability and status of those facilities,” said Col. Charles Klinge, commander, Fort Worth District of the U.S. Army Corp of Engineers.

Nationwide, about 800,000 federal workers are being forced off the job as most non-essential federal programs and services are suspended.

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