Feedback: Government Shutdown Ripples Through North Country

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To find a group feeling the effects of the government shutdown, look no further than The WorkPlace in Watertown.

It relies on federal funding so it can prepare people for the workforce.

But it has only seen 7 percent of funding for this fiscal year and won't see any more until the shutdown ends.

"As of today, we cannot put anybody into training until we received the remainder of our funds," said Cheryl Mayforth of The WorkPlace.

Meanwhile, at Fort Drum, the commissaries will be closed starting Wednesday.

A third of the civilian workforce has been furloughed, including 250 workers in the garrison command, which has them looking for answers from union leaders.

"They have their issues, their payments, their budgets, and it's just like this hopeless feeling getting kicked in the teeth constantly because we're easy prey," said Loren Zeilnhofer, 1st vice president of American Federation of Government Employees Local 400.

"I think that the way in which the civilian workforce has been treated is abominable in this particular situation. In addition to the impact on these individuals, there's also a community impact," said north country Congressman Bill Owens (D. - 21st District).

It's affecting people who use federal administrations, too, like Social Security.

Yes, checks are still being sent out, but if you need a new Social Security or Medicare card, you're not getting it until the government shutdown ends.

Owens, who is a Democrat, says he'd vote for a Republican bill if it was "rational" and says as the days go on, and pressure grows, the likelihood of a resolution will grow.

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Saturday, October 25, 2014
, Watertown, NY

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