This is a follow-up to previous discussions about a potential Federal government shutdown that was avoided through a continuing resolution restricting expenditures.   The threat hinges on Congress being able to establish a 2018 budget that contains funding for the wall between the U.S. and Mexico, one that defunds Obamacare and a resolution of the DACA issue. All within spending caps that still need to be defined before the Government runs out of money to pay its bills on or around December 22nd.

As a government contractor, whether large or small, NOW is the time to take actions to be prepared for these events and to minimize their impact on your organization!

All of this said you need to be proactive to protect your interests whether the results are a continuing resolution, a series of continuing resolutions or a complete government shutdown.  The Government may deny you recovery of cost impacts due to their “sovereign act” but no recovery can be made without showing attempts to mitigate the costs incurred and without extensive documentation.

Bloomberg Government on December 4th issued a listing of a variety of contractor activities to assess risk and prepare for the possibility of a shutdown.

  • Engage with government clients to try to find out if your staff will be deemed essential  (i.e. not impacted by a shutdown)
  • Identify current contracts that will be executable under a shutdown and the potential revenue implications of those that won’t
  • Determine what contract modifications might be made after the shutdown to enable the company to make up lost revenue (i.e. requests for equitable adjustment, etc.)
  • Assess which staff are most at risk of furlough and how to prepare them for the possibility of unplanned time off
  • Deciding whether to compensate staff during a layoff or furlough or to allow them to use vacation or leave

Although a shutdown may be unlikely, federal contractors should be prepared for the possibility by considering its potential impact on their current work, revenue streams, and workforce.