Threat of snow shuts down federal government

Quick decisions to shut down the hall of government usually bring barbed observations.

A skier makes his way on the Washington Mall after a substantial snowfall shut down the government several years ago. (Capitol Hill Blue photo by Doug Thompson)

A skier makes his way on the Washington Mall after a substantial snowfall shut down the government several years ago. (Capitol Hill Blue photo by Doug Thompson)

It doesn’t take much snow to shut down the federal government in Washington and with forecasts calling for between four and eight inches of the white stuff in the National Capital Region Tuesday the powers that be pulled the plug on all “non essential” personnel

The federal government says its offices in the Washington area will be closed Tuesday and the Office of Personnel Management says non-emergency personnel in and around the District of Columbia are granted excused absences for the day.

Emergency employees and telework-ready employees are expected to work.

The National Weather Service predicts Washington could get between 4 and 8 inches of snow Tuesday, with higher amounts north of the nation’s capital.

Quick decisions to shut down the hall of government usually bring barbed observations about how easy it is to shutter the doors of Uncle Sam, be it a partisan budget battle or just the threat of bad weather.

Government workers who come from more winter weather-prone states also laugh when they get a holiday from what they consider to be “just a little bit of snow.”
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