The Daily Guide - Waynesville, MO
  • Some federal offices in Rolla closed

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  • The federal government shutdown, which took effect at midnight Tuesday, caused some federal offices in Rolla to close and others to offer limited services.
    The Mark Twain National Forest office on Fairgrounds Road in Rolla was closed Tuesday. A sign outside the building stated that the office was closed “due to (a) lapse in federal funding.”
    The sign stated that visitors were still welcome to recreate on the forestland, but that services and facilities would not be provided.
    The U.S. Forest Service offices were closed nationwide with the exception of certain essential services to protect life and property.
    The U.S. Geological Survey office in Rolla also was closed Friday, but no signs notifying of the closure were found on the property.
    According to the USGS contingency plan, “The U.S. Geological Survey expects most of its workforce (8,623) to participate in the orderly shutdown process ...
    “The U.S. Geological Survey has identified 43 employees needed for the protection of life and
    property to be retained in the event of a lapse in appropriation. Because sufficient carryover is
    available to support the salary and benefit costs of these employees, they are designated as exempt.”
    The USGS states that nationwide, there will be 200 employees “on call” available, such as responders to a natural disaster.
    Among the services and programs that would cease by the USGS are that online access to publications, maps, and data will be limited, and water quality data will not be received, analyzed or disseminated to the public.
    Social Security field offices are open with limited services under the partial shutdown. Hearings offices remain open to conduct hearings before an administrative law judge, but Social Security card centers are closed.
    Social Security and Supplemental Security Income (SSI) payments to beneficiaries will continue with no change in payment dates.
    The limited services will be offered at Social Security field offices:
    • Help with applying for benefits
    • Assistance in requesting an appeal
    • Changing an address or direct deposit information
    • Accepting reports of death
    • Verifying or changing citizenship status
    • Replacing a lost or missing Social Security payment
    • Issuing a critical payment
    • Changing a representative payee
    • Processing a change in a living arrangement or income for SSI recipients only.
    • The offices will not provide these services:
    • Issuing new or replacement Social Security cards
    • Replacing Medicare cards
    • Issuing a proof of income letter.
    The Social Security Administration estimates it will have 18,006 furloughed employees.
    The U.S. Post Office will not be affected by the shutdown.
    Additionally, people may still apply for passports at the Phelps County clerk’s office at the county courthouse.
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