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Stringer Letter To Boehner

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					FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Contact: Audrey Gelman (212) 669-8143, (347) 534-6069

    BOROUGH PRESIDENT WARNS HOUSE SPEAKER BOEHNER THAT
    THREATENED GOVERNMENT SHUTDOWN WOULD HAVE SERIOUS
             ECONOMIC IMPACT ON NEW YORK CITY

As the prospect of a federal government shut-down looms in the next 48 hours,
Manhattan Borough President Scott M. Stringer sent a letter to House Speaker John
Boehner, warning Republican lawmakers in Washington that the collateral damage from
the looming shutdown could have serious economic impacts on New York City.

April 6, 2011

Honorable John Boehner
H-232 The Capitol
Washington D.C. 20515

Dear Speaker Boehner,

With the prospect of a federal government shut-down looming in the next 48 hours as a
result of the needless political impasse surrounding the passage of an FY 2011
appropriations bill, I am writing to warn you of the serious collateral damage such a
shutdown could have on the economy of New York, the financial capital of our nation.

During the last federal government shutdown in 1995, it was estimated that most of the
30,000 federal employees in New York City were furloughed.1 According to the most
recent statistics published by the federal government in 2007, there are 53,730 federal
employees working in some 150 different agencies in the New York metropolitan
region.23 If history is any guide, a very large percentage of the New York based federal
work force can expect to stop collecting their paychecks if a shut down occurs.

Since the anticipated number of furloughed federal employees in the New York
metropolitan region will have to be determined by the White House and agency heads in

1
  http://www.nytimes.com/1995/11/15/nyregion/battle-over-the-budget-new-york-like-workers-debt-clock-
is-placed-on-furlough.html?scp=1&sq=shutdown+%2B+new+york+%2B+furlough&st=nyt
2
  http://www.opm.gov/feddata/factbook/2007/2007FACTBOOK.pdf
3
  http://www.newyorkcity.feb.gov/
the coming days, the full impact of a federal government shutdown remains unknown.
However, the federal government shutdown in 1995 provides a useful precedent for what
New Yorkers could expect if a deal is not reached by Friday evening. During the six-day
shutdown in November 1995:

    •   An estimated 80,000 passport applications and 80,000 visas were delayed by the
        State Department. A similar interruption could have severe impacts on
        international tourism in New York City. In 2010 some 9.7 million tourists visited
        New York City from abroad, generating a significant portion of the $31 billion in
        tourist spending last year alone.
    •   An estimated 10,000 new applications for Medicare went unprocessed each day of
        the shutdown.4 Significant delays in new applications by New Yorkers for
        Medicare, Medicaid, Social Security and Food Stamps could be expected this
        time around.
    •   An estimated 2 million tourists were turned away from national parks. New York
        City has eight federal parks, including the Statue of Liberty, which account for 12
        million annual visits.56
    •   In 1995, work on all EPA Superfund sites was halted, leaving over 10,000
        contractors and subcontractors out of work. New York City has twenty-six
        superfund sites7 employing an untold number of contractors and subcontractors.

The President has made clear his desire to negotiate in good faith. Nonetheless, the
Republican majority appears to be chomping at the bit to force a government shutdown,
consequences be damned. My message to Republicans in Congress is clear: political
gamesmanship comes at a price. Before you recklessly step over the line and force a
government shutdown, take a deep breath and remember that your actions have
consequences. I’m outraged that New York, as both a center of tourism and a city with
large population reliant on government services, will suffer from the consequences of
arrogance and overreach.

It is imperative that Republicans return to the negotiating table to avert a ruinous outcome
for millions of New Yorkers.


Sincerely,


Scott M. Stringer
Manhattan Borough President



4
  http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2011/03/03/AR2011030302621_pf.html
5
  http://www.nps.gov/applications/parksearch/state.cfm?st=NY
6
  http://cityroom.blogs.nytimes.com/2011/04/06/whos-in-grants-tomb-not-you-if-government-shuts-
down/?scp=4&sq=1995%20government%20shutdown&st=cse
7
  http://cfpub.epa.gov/supercpad/cursites/srchrslt.cfm?Start=126&sortby=site

				
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