SANDSTON, Va. (WRIC) —The Transportation Security Administration (TSA) is one of the many agencies that may suffer serious setbacks as the fate of a government shutdown hangs in the balance.
Congress currently remains divided on a new funding plan for the next fiscal year — set to begin on Oct. 1, 2023. The Biden Administration says more than 13,000 air traffic controllers and 50,000 TSA officers would be forced to report to work without getting paid until funding becomes available.
These respective air travel employees have been in this situation before—most recently during the partial government shutdown in 2019. At that time, the number of TSA employees missing work reached 10% nationwide heading into the fifth week of the partial government shutdown.
National non-profit experts have predicted a possible shutdown would have many travelers experiencing an increase in flight delays, longer screening lines and the industry itself would experience setbacks in air travel modernization.
A new analysis for the national U.S. travel agency non-profit, U.S. Travel Association reveals that a federal government shutdown would cost the nation’s travel agency an estimated amount of $140 million a day.
The association added that the potential negative setback would hit air and rail travel with a reduction in demand and spending — the closing of National Parks, Federal lands and federally owned museums and attractions. This would exacerbate areas of the travel industry that have not fully recovered from the COVID-19 pandemic.
Along with providing an extension to government funding, the proposed legislation would support Ukraine’s defensive efforts and ensure the Federal Aviation Administration, community health care centers and more receive the funding they need to continue operating.
The measure still needs to be passed in the House to avoid a shutdown of the federal government on Sunday, Oct. 1.