Hundreds are furloughed and thousands of Missouri National Guard soldiers have had their weekend plans changed.
They are Missouri National Guard, but they get paychecks from the federal government. Hundreds of Missouri National Guard personnel across the state are furloughed.
For many in the Missouri National Guard aviation maintenance facility at the Springfield airport, it's an unpaid vacation. "That particular group is affected fairly drastically by the shutdown, because their activities have been deemed non-accepted, meaning they get furloughed during the period of this government shutdown," says Major Tammy Spicer, Public Affairs Officer for the Missouri National Guard.
Soldiers with the 1107th Aviation group are still reporting to work, because they're preparing for a mobilization.
But for more than 900 federal technicians with the Missouri National Guard, the federal government shut-down is having a direct effect.
"These are the same federal technicians that received a six day unpaid furlough just over the last couple months in the end of fiscal year 2013, so there's a substantial financial burden on a lot of our employees," says Spicer.
Thousands more in the guard have had their weekend plans cancelled, because the Department of Defense can't allow drill weekend to go on as scheduled. "Typically for the Missouri National Guard, the first weekend of the month is a major drill weekend, so yes, this October 5th and 6th weekend was, across the board, expected to be a drill weekend, so a lot of changes have been made by a lot of people across the state in the past few days," Spicer says.
But the guard emphasizes they are always ready to respond. "Under all circumstances, including this government shutdown, the Missouri National Guard is prepared and able to respond to state emergency duty missions as ordered by Governor Nixon," Spicer says.
There are about 160 personnel in the Springfield area on furlough. The shut-down is having similar effects on national guard units across the country.