Yes, it’s over.
Well, sort of.
Yes, it’s over.
Well, sort of.
Our lawmakers finally reached a bipartisan agreement to end the government shutdown, returning hundreds of thousands of federal employees back to work and raising the nation’s $16.7 trillion debt limit, reported The Washington Post’s Lori Montgomery and Rosalind S. Helderman. The measure also guarantees workers back pay for the time they were not allowed to work.
But the deal has a short shelf life. It only funds the federal government through mid-January. “Federal agencies would be funded through Jan. 15, when they might shut down again unless lawmakers resolve a continuing dispute over deep automatic spending cuts known as the sequester,” Montgomery and Helderman write.
And the deal only increases the Treasury Department’s borrowing power until Feb. 7, which sets the stage for yet another potential confrontation over the national debt.
If you’ve got some time to kill, you can read the full 35-page agreement here.
My advice if you’re a federal worker or an employee who may be affected by another shutdown: Save. And then save some more, because I wouldn’t count out another shutdown, soon and very soon.
Government shutdown stories of financial woe
The Post’s Joe Davidson’s Federal Diary story on Wednesday about the financial hardships furloughed workers were experiencing drew lots of Twitter reaction on his page @JoeDavidsonWP and mine @SingletaryM.
On Twitter @twogrilled tweeted in response to the story: “never should we see Gov’ments stubbornly elevate their egos ahead of the welfare of the citizens. #shame
On Wednesday I wrote about the importance of having an emergency fund even if you think your job is unemployment-proof. For a long time, long before sequester-demanded furlough days and the government shutdowns, people have blurred the line between needs and wants, not really distinguishing between the two. We all need to let the shutdown be a financial reset button when the feds get back to work.
Some of you heard me. On Twitter one of my followers @walkworthy4Him, Jacqueline Williams, a social worker, wrote: “INCREASING emergency fund by selling my mint condition Camry that I drive just once a week to church anyway.”
Here are some additional shutdown stories:
-- In a CNN Money article, a union survey found that more than 50 percent of government employees had to contact their credit card companies because they couldn’t pay their bills as a result of the furlough.
-- Unfortunately, everyone affected by the government shutdown will not receive back pay, reports the Huffington Post
Join the Color of Money Live conversation Thursday, Oct. 17, at noon ET.
I want to hear your shutdown stories, and I’ll also answer your personal finance questions.
My Girlfriend Is Watching My Wallet
In a recent chat, Washington Post advice columnist Carolyn Hax responded to a reader who wanted to know how to handle an upset girlfriend who didn’t think he spent enough on her for their second anniversary.
Here are the details:
-- The girlfriend purchased a pricey gift for the boyfriend.