Short-Term Agreement Reached to Re-Open Government

A short-term agreement will re-open the government until February 15th. Back pay will occur quickly for federal employees according to President Trump.

President Trump has announced he will support a continuing resolution to reopen the government for three weeks (until February 15th) while the debate over a border wall continues.

While the agreement does not resolve the political dispute on a wall on the southern border of the United States, the agreement will allow federal employees who have been furloughed to quickly return to work and all of those that have not been paid to again receive a paycheck. President Trump said in his speech that receipt of back pay for federal employees would happen quickly.

President Trump also thanked federal employees for their patriotism and patience during the shutdown and the political dispute.

The temporary spending bill would extend border security funding at current levels, which includes $1.3 billion for border security but not specifically for a wall. President Trump will presumably still push for border wall funding in the deal reached after the three weeks are up.

A bi-partisan conference committee will review requests of Homeland Security officials for border security. The committee will put together a homeland security package for President Trump to sign.

He also noted this is an opportunity for all parties to work together. He said that any fair deal will result in showing America can put country before party to benefit everyone.

The president emphasized that walls work and most Democrats have voted for bills that include walls or fences. He said we do not need 2,000 miles of concrete walls because we have barriers at the borders with natural structures as good as a wall. Proposed structures will be in high-risk locations identified by the Border Patrol to stop illicit traffic.

If we do not get a fair deal from Congress, the government will shut down again or President will address this issue in another way after February 15th. The other option would presumably be to declare a national emergency and to pay for a wall or fence using other sources of funding.

About the Author

Ralph Smith has several decades of experience working with federal human resources issues. He has written extensively on a full range of human resources topics in books and newsletters and is a co-founder of two companies and several newsletters on federal human resources. Follow Ralph on Twitter: @RalphSmith47