MEMPHIS, TN (WMC) - In one week, the federal government could shut down for a second time this year. Negotiations are ongoing to find a budget solution.
Mississippi Congressman Steve Palazzo is part of those talks. He says lawmakers will meet in the middle on border security funding.
The fear and anxiety surrounding another possible government shut is very real for thousands of government employees. Friday could be the last paycheck for federal employees if lawmakers fail to reach a deal on border security.
“People are anxious about the decision that’s going to happen prior to Feb. 15,” said Gibson Jones, president of Memphis National Treasury Employees Union.
Friday wraps up the second work week federal employees were back on the job and getting paid after the longest shutdown in U.S. history. Jones says work inside the Memphis’ IRS building piled up. On Friday employees were still trying to catch up.
“They are quite anxious because in the back of their minds, why would we stop now when we have the work process moving again?” said Jones.
Federal workers are still struggling to get their finances back on track after the historic government shutdown.
“It’s very scary. We actually told everybody pay what you have to pay but don’t pay in addition to that. hold onto your money. Save as much as you can because we are so uncertain if this is going to shut down or not again,” said Bandy Moore, Council of Prison Locals C-33.
She says though most federal employees affected by the shutdown have since been paid, a handful of federal employees are still waiting on their back pay.
“So now they are terrified again to be back in the same situation and a lot of people haven’t been able to recover from the late fees and all that from the last shut down,” said Moore.
It’s a fear that in one week could be come reality.
The Mid-South Food Bank helped close to 1,000 families of federal employees who turned to them during the last shutdown. They tell us they are prepare to help again if needed.