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federal shutdown

The 2019 tax season is here. Have you filed your forms? If so, good on you for not procrastinating. If not, you might want to reconsider waiting until the last minute... because the U.S. tax code has changed.

This hour, we take an in-depth look at the 2017 Tax Cuts and Jobs Act and find out what it means for those filing taxes this year.

Later, Connecticut Public Radio’s Patrick Skahill takes us inside a UConn lecture hall, where students are learning the science of cultivating... get this... cannabis. 

Updated at 1:39 a.m. ET Tuesday

Congressional negotiators have reached what they are calling "an agreement in principle" on a border-security spending agreement. Details of the agreement have not yet been released. Senate Appropriations Committee Chairman Richard Shelby, R-Ala., says the full details will be released when the drafting of the bill is complete — a process that could be finished on Tuesday, at the earliest.

Updated at 5 p.m. ET

The partial shutdown of the government reduced federal spending by about $3 billion and cut into overall U.S. economic growth, according to a report released Monday by the nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office.

The report says that because of the shutdown, which lasted from Dec. 22 through last Friday, about $18 billion in discretionary government spending was delayed. Most of the money will be spent later, now that the shutdown has ended.

Master Steve Rapport / Creative Commons

There's a healthy debate going on about whether to initiate impeachment proceedings against President Trump.

The Atlantic's Yoni Appelbaum and others say now is the time to begin the process. History tells us that the process of impeachment, not the outcome, is a vital protection against the dangers of a president who has not kept his promise to preserve and defend our Constitution. Others say Trump will need to be beaten at the polls in the absence of Mueller-stamped evidence.  

Frankie Graziano / Connecticut Public Radio

President Donald Trump announced from the White House Friday that he’s made a tentative deal with congress to re-open the government and end the shutdown.

Updated at 9:45 p.m. ET

The longest government shutdown in history ended after President Trump signed a bipartisan three-week stopgap funding measure late Friday. Several agencies had been partially shuttered for 35 days.

"I am very proud to announce today that we have reached a deal to end the shutdown and reopen the federal government," Trump said earlier Friday in the White House Rose Garden, announcing the long-awaited bipartisan breakthrough.

Updated at 5:35 p.m. ET

Travelers experienced significant flight delays at New York's LaGuardia Airport and at New Jersey's Newark Liberty International Airport on Friday due to a shortage of air traffic control center workers. Philadelphia International Airport also saw slight staffing-related delays.

Annette Elizabeth Allen / NPR

President Donald Trump is speaking about the partial government shutdown more than 34 days since it began. This comes as federal workers miss another paycheck and air travel is delayed because of a shortage of workers.

Updated at 9 p.m. ET

After an at-times heated debate, the Senate on Thursday, as expected, failed to approve either of the competing measures that would have ended the standoff over border wall funding.

If nothing else, the votes seemed to spur a flurry of efforts to find a way to end the standoff. Sen. Lindsey Graham, R-S.C., announced on the Senate floor after the measures failed that he spoke with President Trump about a three-week stopgap bill to reopen the government.

In this game of who would blink first in this shutdown showdown, it was, perhaps surprisingly, President Trump.

Late Wednesday night, the president tweeted saying he would defer to House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and not deliver a State of the Union address until the government is back open.

U.S. Customs and Border Protection

While the debate over a U.S.-Mexico border wall has been broadcast loudly across headlines, revisions to U.S. immigration policy have occurred quietly, with little notice.

This hour, we take an in-depth look at these changes and consider their impact on current and future immigrants.

Plus, when it comes to welcoming new immigrants, how willing are municipal leaders and residents to open their arms? We find out and we also hear from you. 

Lori Mack / Connecticut Public Radio

A startup biotechnology company out of Yale University is concerned that the government shutdown will have an impact on a new drug they’ve been working on. 

Frankie Graziano / Connecticut Public Radio

Nonprofit organizations are having trouble in their efforts to serve survivors of domestic violence.

Ryan Lindsay / Connecticut Public Radio

As the month-marker of the partial government shutdown approaches, Transportation Security Administration employees at Bradley International Airport are turning to food donations to keep meals on their table.

Hayes Joins Hunt For McConnell In Attempt To End Shutdown

Jan 16, 2019
Rep. Jahana Hayes was among the congressional freshmen seeking to deliver a letter to Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell regarding the government shutdown.
Office of Rep. Jahana Hayes / Twitter

Followed by a phalanx of journalists, Rep. Jahana Hayes joined a group of House Democratic freshmen Wednesday who went on the hunt for Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell.

Updated at 3:20 p.m. ET

The annual State of the Union message to Congress may be the latest casualty of the partial government shutdown.

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., sent a letter to President Trump on Wednesday, suggesting a postponement until after the shutdown is over. The speech, which the president would deliver to a joint session of Congress and a national broadcast audience, was originally scheduled for Jan. 29.

As the standoff between President Trump and Congress continues over funding for Trump's proposed border wall, the partial shutdown of the federal government means workers will go weeks without a paycheck. That has some looking for temporary jobs to pay their bills.

In Boise, Idaho, Chris Kirk says he's worked for the federal government for 19 years. He administers contracts for the hundreds of millions of dollars the U.S. Forest Service spends on fighting wildfires. But these days he's on furlough and looking for extra income.

Clarice Silber / CT Mirror

Shuttered national parks, TSA workers calling in sick, hundreds of thousands of paychecks missed. Americans around the country are feeling the impact of the longest government shutdown in U.S. history. But it’s not just federal employees who are struggling.

This hour, we find out how the shutdown is affecting some of the country’s most vulnerable residents.

Frankie Graziano / Connecticut Public Radio

Coast Guard families are enduring hardships as active duty personnel and civilian employees live without pay during the government shutdown.

The partial shutdown of the federal government is causing some financial problems for furloughed workers who can't refinance their mortgages or buy homes because lenders can't verify their income. But unpaid federal employees aren't the only ones running into problems.

Libby Anderson, for example, got her final divorce decree on Tuesday. She'd hoped that would mean her ex-husband would finally move out of their Des Moines, Iowa, home, where they've been living separate lives under one roof for eight months.

Frankie Graziano / Connecticut Public Radio

Beer drinkers will not get to sample brand new creations from their favorite breweries during the government shutdown.

The government's partial shutdown has turned Washington's National Mall into a bleak place. Trash cans are overflowing, museums and historic sites are shuttered. Park Service rangers and Smithsonian employees are furloughed as the shutdown drags on.

At Ardovino's Desert Crossing, an Italian restaurant in southern New Mexico, it's not unusual for diners to look up from their gnocchi and see Border Patrol agents outside aiming flashlights at footprints on the ground.

Chion Wolf / Connecticut Public Radio

Tensions remain high and a sense of urgency has set in as the partial shutdown of the federal government begins to affect more Americans.

Updated at 1:25 p.m. ET

The ongoing government shutdown didn't stop the Justice Department's public affairs office from issuing statements this week about cases involving America's Southern border.

Officials in Washington, D.C., instructed field office workers on Dec. 21 that the public affairs unit would "only issue press releases to the extent it is necessary to ensure public safety or national security, such as a terrorist attack or something of similar magnitude."

Updated at 7:27 p.m. ET

A closed-door briefing for congressional leaders in the White House Situation Room on Wednesday failed to resolve any issues between Democrats and the Trump administration over funding for border security.

The stalemate has led to a partial government shutdown, now nearing the two-week mark.

"I don't think any particular progress was made," Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., told reporters afterward.

Congress returns Tuesday from its spring recess, facing yet another down-to-the-wire spate of deal-making — and a White House anxious to claim its first major legislative win.

On Friday night, the funding measure lawmakers approved last year to keep the federal government running will expire. The timing leaves members of the House and Senate just four days to reach a new agreement to fund the government, or risk a partial shutdown of federal agencies on Saturday — the 100th day of Donald Trump's presidency.

The federal government shutdown ordeal only recently ended, but candidates on both sides of the aisle are already on the air with ads aiming to turn the impasse to their advantage.

Chion Wolf

UConn Philosophy professor Michael Lynch wrote in a recent New York Times opinion piece, that we’re living in a “dangerous political moment.” Not just because of the shutdown of the federal government and the near default on the nation’s debts, but he writes: “The real damage is caused by the idea that that our current democratic form of government should be shuttered.” That a large segment of the population might think government really is a bad idea. 

Chion Wolf / WNPR

With the shutdown in the rearview mirror, Connecticut's senior senator said it’s vital for Congress to reach a budget accord as soon as possible.

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