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How The Minnesota State Government Shutdown Will Affect You

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Minnesota politicians have four days to avert a budget crisis- and they walked out of closed door sessions without a deal just yesterday. If they reach an impasse, what happens?

On Thursday June 30th at 4pm, the Minnesota State government will shut down. Will anarchy take over? Will there be wild motorcycle gangs ruling the road ala Mad Max? Should you hide in your basement and wait for the sirens to subside? Well, ok that last one can’t happen because the sirens are turned on by government employees.

But the shutdown has a bigger impact than you may realize.

Locally, Stearns County may have to foot the bill for the West-Metro Corridor Project. County Commissioners have said they won’t ok a continuation of the project through the shutdown, unless the state government can guarantee they’ll get the money back. Stearns County Highway Engineer Mitch Anderson told the county board they can’t afford any delays in the project.  He says they need to get it open to traffic by the scheduled date in November and that means the county will have to “front” the money to handle materials testing that MnDOT normally does.  It sounds like an episode of The Soprano’s.

Fortunately, SCSU will keep operating. The state and MnScu officials came to a back room arrangement to keep the campuses going. MnSCU has enough money to stay open during a shutdown, but there were concerns it would not have access to it. Under the deal, the State Budget Office will stay open during any shutdown to handle the system’s finances. However, if there’s a prolonged shutdown, 80,000 students may not get state grants sent to them in time for the fall.
Statewide, the impact is broader, affecting our vacation and summer fun plans; according to a Pioneer Press article:

The MN Zoo would shut down. The Zoo will make its case in court to keep the facility open, contending they can finance it with admission revenue.

4th of July camping is a goner. The 67 state parks and seven recreation areas would close. If you have reservations, the DNR is saying keep them,  but if a shutdown happens,  prepayments and reservation fees would be refunded.

Highway rest areas would close, traffic-management cameras and ramp meters would be turned off and “highway helpers” wouldn’t be there to help you out if you get in trouble on the roadside.

If you’re planning a hunting, fishing or trapping trip- you better get those licenses now. That goes for  boats, ATV’s, off-highway motorcycle and other recreational vehicle registrations. Electronic registration will be suspended.

Your 401k could be in danger if the government boneheads can’t come to an agreement- you won’t be able to buy a lottery ticket because the offices that handle that will be locked up.

There’s a whole bunch of dire stuff that could happen.  Click here to read full list as reported by The Pioneer Press.

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