White House tours will resume on "a limited basis" starting Nov. 5, the White House announced Friday, while it will reopen its gardens and grounds to visitors on Oct. 26 and 27.
Secret Service spokesman Robert Novy said the tours would continue through Jan. 15 and occur three days a week, on average, though the exact number of days would vary. Before the White House halted the tours in March, they had taken place five days a week.
"Last year’s sequestration came midway through the fiscal year, and we were unable to adjust or re-allocate remaining funding to continue tours while still ensuring enough funding remained to meet all operational needs and avoid furloughing our employees," Novy said. "In light of the new fiscal year, the Secret Service is confident that through the Continuing Resolution tours can operate on a limited schedule while still meeting operational requirements."
Back in March, White House officials said the Secret Service had made the decision to cancel the popular tourist offering due to the across-the-board mandatory budget cuts known as sequestration. Now that a new fiscal year has started and there is a temporary continuing resolution, the Secret Service official said, the agency was able to reallocate funds so its agents could perform the necessary security screening required for an increased number of White House visitors.