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Government Shutdown Felt Throughout Oregon

The government shutdown has forced the closure of numerous federal offices in Oregon as well as a number of popular recreation sites, including Crater Lake.

Crater Lake

Crater Lake

Amelia Templeton/OPB/EarthFix

It’s not clear just how many of Oregon’s 17,000 year-round federal employees will be furloughed.  But that number could run into the thousands.  Only employees considered essential under the law are exempt.

Pilots with the Oregon Air National Guard’s 142nd Fighter Wing, for example, remain on-duty because they protect national security. 

But about a thousand other National Guard employees - some of whom maintain those planes - aren’t working.

Even though those employees aren’t considered essential by statute, Guard spokesman Stephen Bomar says says they are essential to the mission.

“That’s what keeps it all flowing, people to process pay, people who do the maintenance on our aircraft,” he says. “That’s where the concern comes in.  The longer this goes on the more impact there really is.”

A prolonged shutdown is also a big concern for workers who right now aren’t drawing a paycheck.

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