With shutdown over, local federal workers head back to work

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SEATTLE — The Ballard Locks have been hit hard by the 16-day government shutdown, but things are slowly returning to normal.

The Carl S. English Jr. Botanical Garden at the Locks has reopened and park rangers are back and getting the place up and running again. The garden was open shortly before 7 a.m. Thursday; Army Corps of Engineers rangers said they received word to head back to work Wednesday afternoon.

They have plenty of work ahead of them. During the shutdown, no one was around to keep up the landscaping and they said it will take a few days to get everything in order, especially at the botanical garden.

locks“I walk over here and get a cup of coffee and my morning paper and a little exercise, so I am glad that it’s back open. It’s about time,” Bob Robillard, a Ballard resident, said.

For many in the area the shutdown was frustrating.

“I think it was a little nutty,” Karim Miller said. “Basically I wouldn’t say they got what they deserved, but you know it wasn’t right what they did. They should have been able to agree, work it out, but not let people sit idle,” Miller said.

Gov. Inslee released a statement Thursday morning saying, “Beginning today, federal offices will reopen and federal employees and federally-funded state employees will return to work. Washington state escaped the most severe impacts that would have soon hit had Congress not acted, though the past two weeks have brought needless stress to many families here.”

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1 Comment

  • Skip

    Where are the Republicans bragging about what the Tea Party Shutdown accomplished? America needs to wake up and quit electing the GOP brats from the southern states. It's been shown that the south soaks-up lots of federal help and cash while contributing less tax revenue than the Northern states.