This weekend I caught up with some guests from out of town and was somewhat chagrined to have to contemplate telling them that they might not be able to visit some of the country’s best sights due to the government shutdown of 2018. The botched plans of tourists were only one facet of ruminating upon what, exactly, would take place during such an event.
Amidst the anxiety generated by such governmental and political dysfunction, please be reminded that some professionals show leadership by conveying clear instructions in the event of such a contingency. Here’s a link to the SEC’s Operations Plan in the event of a government shutdown, which is posted on the agency’s website, and thus accessible to the general public: https://www.sec.gov/files/sec-operations-plan-gov%20shutdown-to-omb-12042017.pdf. There is a similarly accessible plan posted on the DOJ website: https://www.justice.gov/jmd/page/file/1015676/download. The Department of Commerce’s contingency plan is 137 pages long: https://www.commerce.gov/sites/commerce.gov/files/plan_for_orderly_shutdown_due_to_lapse_of_congressional_appropriations_-_20171207.pdf in contrast to the previous two, which were less than twenty pages in length. A link to the VA’s contingency plan may be found on this page: https://www.blogs.va.gov/VAntage/43654/va-contingency-plan-2017/. It seems to be formatted in MS, unlike the others just cited, which were PDFs.
Why isn’t there one of these contingency plans on the homepage of all of our government agencies, or at least for each Cabinet office? Now is probably a good time to observe that respect is earned, most often during moments when some are grandstanding while others quietly make sure people are supplied with a plan of action, and a government.