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Don't Panic, Prepare

A government shut down could happen on October 1.

Congress has recessed until early September, but must pass a spending bill by September 30 to avoid a government shutdown. The House will have twelve working days to pass eleven appropriation bills.

It is possible that Congress could pass a continuing resolution to avoid a shutdown. It is also possible that they won't be able to agree even on that.

If the government shuts down, then federal discretionary programs will stop, including WIC. Grants and contracts will not be processed or paid during a shutdown. Mandatory programs will continue: social security, Medicare, Medicaid, veterans’ benefits.

Things your organization do to get prepared:

  • Develop a contingency plan. If your nonprofit has government grants or contracts, expect those payments to stop.

  • If you have applied for a grant or contract, expect delays in the review process and notification.

  • Anticipate that donations may drop off with the uncertainty caused by the shutdown.

  • Anticipate increased demand for services.

For additional resources on how to prepare, see:Common Sense Warns Nonprofits to Get Prepared,” especially the section “Think through the operational and financial implications for your nonprofit, and plan accordingly” by Tim Delaney, National Council of Nonprofits, March 15, 2023

Everything You Should Know About Government Shutdowns,” by the Committee for a Responsible Federal Budget, December 12, 2022

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