"FMA is demoralized that Congress and the administration were unable to come together and reach a deal to avert a government shutdown. It is particularly abhorrent for federal employees to be facing a shutdown so close to the holidays. FMA has strongly cautioned Congress against its overreliance on short-term CRs to fund the government and shutdowns such as these are the end result.
"Our members are dedicated patriots who tirelessly serve their communities, fulfilling congressionally-mandated missions and goals, while administering invaluable services to all Americans. Hundreds of thousands of federal employees -- who are taxpayers like their fellow citizens -- have been told to stay home. This shutdown has tangible, negative effects on the employees, their families, and every American who relies on the services they provide.
"Federal employees must now spend the holiday season anxiously waiting to see if and when they will be able to return to work. We urge Congressional leadership and the administration to immediately come to a compromise so feds may celebrate the holidays without having to worry when their next paycheck will come. We fear they may have to wait until the next session of Congress convenes before the shutdown will draw to a conclusion.
"FMA reminds Congress that delaying appropriations and forcing government shutdowns results in egregious costs and waste. It takes significant time and resources for agencies to prepare for a shutdown, when they should be fulfilling agency missions.
"It is particularly regrettable that Congress was also unable to pass the 1.9 percent pay raise for all civilian federal employees that was agreed upon prior to the November election. A pay freeze does not help employees' morale, nor does it help with retention and recruitment of new, high quality feds. FMA wants to personally thank Senator Chris Van Hollen (D-MD) and Senator Ben Cardin (D-MD) for their rigorous, eleventh-hour attempt to include the pay raise in a potential CR. FMA remains hopeful Congressional leaders will be able to pass a pay raise retroactively at the beginning of the next Congressional session when it is widely expected that the government will be reopened."