An interview with Chris Patil, a Boston-based biologist and scientific writer who wants to go to Mars.
Federal Shutdown May Force Furloughs, Cuts At State Agencies
The continued federal government shutdown is starting to affect some of Arizona's state agencies. According to the current state budget, the Arizona Department of Transportation is set to get about $178 million from the U.S. government. Spokesman Doug Nintzel said federally funded highway projects will not be affected, but ADOT administers $20 million a year in Federal Transit Administration grants that pay for local programs like rural public transit and rides for the elderly and disabled in communities around the state.
"We're letting those agencies know that we can't process their reimbursements for those grant funds, so they in turn will have to determine how that impacts their operations," Nintzel said.
Nintzel also said 12 ADOT employees are paid through those same frozen grant funds. If the shutdown is not resolved, they will be furloughed after finishing work on Friday, and the state Department of Economic Security said it may have to furlough employees and cut services if the shutdown drags on. About 80 percent of its budget comes from the feds.