1227 Longworth House Office Building
Washington, DC 20515
Phone: (202) 225-6111
Fax: (202) 226-0611
The federal government was forced to close starting Tuesday, Oct. 1, because Congress was unable to agree on a bill to fund the government. Not all federal operations will stop functioning — Social Security checks will still get mailed, and veterans' hospitals will remain open. But many services that our citizens rely on – including IRS call centers, regulatory agencies, and certain functions of the Social Security Administration and Small Business Administration – will be closed until a funding agreement can be reached. I will continue working with Democrats and Republicans to find a solution that re-opens the government as quickly as possible. I will also keep pushing for both parties to find common ground on a balanced, long-term plan that provides the stability that our families and businesses need to grow our economy.
You can contact any of my offices with questions or concerns about the shutdown, its impacts and what I can do to help you.
Tours - Unfortunately, the U.S. Capitol is closed to tourists and all tours are being cancelled day-by-day as the shutdown continues. If you are visiting, please be sure to check what is open and closed in Washington, D.C. during the shutdown.
Flag Requests - The U.S. Capitol's flag office will remain closed throughout the government shutdown. While I can still accept your requests, no flags will be able to be flown on the dates during the shutdown.
Tell me how the government shutdown is affecting you, your family, your work or your business. Post your comments to facebook page or email me. Also, sign up for my newsletter to get the latest updates about the government shutdown.
Here are some of the basics about the shutdown. Learn more about its impact on technology and the innovation capital of the nation.
1. What causes a government shutdown? According to the Constitution, Congress must pass laws to spend money. If Congress can't agree on a spending bill the government does not have the legal authority to spend money.
2. What's a continuing resolution (CR)? Congress used to spend money by passing a budget first, then 12 separate appropriations bills. More recently, Congress has relied upon a stopgap continuing resolution (CR) that maintains spending at current levels for all or part of the year.
3. What is the problem? The Republican-controlled House has passed a spending bill that maintains spending levels but does not provide funding to implement the Affordable Care Act. The Senate insists that the program be fully funded and that Congress pass what they call a "clean" CR.
4. What is a "clean" CR? "Clean" means free from ideological policy riders, such as defunding Obamacare. Basically, it's a CR without policy changes.
5. Why is this happening now? The government runs on a fiscal year from Oct. 1 to Sept. 30. Shutdowns can happen at other times of the year when Congress passes a partial-year spending bill.
6. Could agencies ignore the shutdown? Under a federal law known as the Anti-Deficiency Act, it can be a felony to spend taxpayer money without an appropriation from Congress.