Live in Wisconsin? Here's how a government shutdown could affect you

NOW: Live in Wisconsin? Here’s how a government shutdown could affect you

WISCONSIN (CBS 58) -- The U.S. government is now three days away from a potential shutdown, and unless some sort of deal is made before Saturday night, the American people will likely feel the effects.

If you live in Wisconsin, this is how it may affect you:

Experts tell CBS 58 News that a shutdown will directly impact the elderly and low-income families (largely those in minority communities such as African American and Hispanic); but they say not to be alarmed, just yet.

"Not all government services, however, will be disrupted," explained Marquette University Political Science Associate Professor, Philip Rocco. "People will still get Social Security, Medicare checks, for example, but a lot of services that we don't necessarily think of every day will be disrupted."

Travel plans may be disrupted because air traffic controllers and TSA agents would have to work without pay. This could lead to longer wait times, significant delays and even flight cancelations if not enough personnel are available. 

Associate Professor Rocco said payroll for federal workers deemed "non-essential" will, however, come to a halt.

"In the United States, it's around 3.5 million people; in the state of Wisconsin, only, it's up to around 20,000 people," added Hong-Min Park, political science associate professor at UW-Milwaukee.

Park said inspections by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) of drinking water and chemical facilities would also be put on hold--causing a major impact on local breweries.

"The breweries will be running as before but if they would like to develop a new craft beer, those kind of approval processes will be delayed significantly," he said.

Wisconsin farmers will also be in limbo, he said, because they depend on loans dealt with by the U.S. Department of Agriculture.

Milwaukee Hunger Task Force CEO Sherrie Tussler told CBS 58 that programs like Head Start that offers early childhood education to low-income families, WIC that helps low-income mothers with infants and children at nutritional risk, and SNAP, which provides food benefits to about 600,000 people in Wisconsin, will also be affected.

"Fifty thousand people...Here in Milwaukee County depend on the Hunger Task Force but it's about a quarter of a million people that are on food share in Milwaukee County," Tussler said. "That's a lot of people, okay? So, those people should get worried in November, but again, we will let them know."

Experts said the money for these federal programs could run out if the shutdown lasts more than a week. 

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