February 20, 2019

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In Case You Missed It: TechNet Highlights Economic Consequences of Shutting Down Government

Heed Economic Lessons of Shutting Down Government
The Hill
By Linda Moore
February 20, 2019

Congress and the president have finally agreed to fund the federal government for the duration of this fiscal year, thus avoiding another shutdown crisis — at least, for the time being.

But now, we implore policymakers: do not do this again.  Let us take stock of the harmful economic impact the recent shutdown had and heed its lessons so that we avoid the self-inflicted damage that prolonged political stalemates in Washington can cause.

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Behind these statistics are real human stories of lives disrupted as hundreds of thousands of federal workers, more than 4 million contractors, and their families missed their paychecks and were stretched to their limits to make ends meet.  Others took on debt or prematurely tapped into their retirement accounts.  A report released this month showed that 62 percent of federal workers affected depleted most or all of their emergency savings.  The shutdown may have lasted for five weeks, but for the impacted families, its effects will be felt for years to come.

Additionally, from the technology industry’s perspective, there were many examples that showed how government shutdowns jeopardize innovation and economic opportunities.  For example, the shutdown disrupted critical scientific research spearheaded by government entities.  In some cases, researchers faced the unacceptable choice of ignoring furlough orders in order to tend to their research according to schedule, or letting those projects go to waste.  When government-led research projects serving national interests are affected like this, it is not only the federal workers handling these initiatives that get hurt; the American people suffer as scientific and technical advancements stall and global competitors race ahead.

Read more here.

About TechNet
TechNet is the national, bipartisan network of technology CEOs and senior executives that promotes the growth of the innovation economy by advocating a targeted policy agenda at the federal and 50-state level.  TechNet’s diverse membership includes dynamic American businesses ranging from startups to the most iconic companies on the planet and represents over three million employees and countless customers in the fields of information technology, e-commerce, the sharing and gig economies, advanced energy, cybersecurity, venture capital, and finance.  TechNet has offices in Albany, Austin, Boston, Chicago, Olympia, Sacramento, San Francisco, Silicon Valley, Tallahassee, and Washington, D.C.

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