Government shutdown closes Nicolet National Forest
While the government showdown over the budget continues in Washington, D.C., the effects of the ensuing shutdown are being felt by at least one area organization.
The Nicolet National Forest and its administrative offices were forced to close due to lack of funding.
Notices on the Forest’s website and on the doors at the administrative center stated that “lapse in federal government funding, the U.S. Forest Service, as with other federal agencies, is closed with the exception of certain essential services.”
Essential services include fire suppression teams, law enforcement, emergency and natural disaster response and key support positions for cyber security and infrastructure operations.
The contigency plan for the for the shutdown also included protection of research studies “where a lack of contiuation measurements or maintance would destroy or endanger validity of research findings.” That would include the Nicolet nursery located off Hwy. K.
Thursday was the deadline for campers and other users of the national park system to vacate any campsites and leave the parks. There was no report on whether all campers had complied with order by press time.
While the Office of Homeland Security was not exempt from the shutdown, the Rhinelander Airport is not feeling any effects of the gridlock in the nation’s capitol.
Airport Director Joe Brauer said the airport has had “no issue at this time” and is operating normally.