Talladega Postmaster Tracy Huddleston said, post offices across the country will continue operating because they are not funded by tax payer dollars. “We’re not going to be affected at all, because we’re self-sufficient. Our revenue comes from the things we sell, like stamps and postage.”
Other offices, including the U.S. Department of Agriculture office which is located inside the Talladega post office, are closed entirely.
A call to the ranger station for the Talladega National Forest is answered by a recorded greeting saying that the office was closed due to lack of funding.
“We look forward to serving you again when the funding is restored,” the recording said.
The Talladega Clay Randolph Head Start center was also closed Tuesday according to National Public Radio, although other Head Start facilities may be open depending on their funding cycle.
According to Barry Spear, public media representative for the Alabama Department of Human Resources, the shutdown should not impact food stamps or any of the other programs that receive federal funding.
“We’re not seeing any negative effects through October, which is all we’ve been able to look at so far,” he said. “I won’t speculate about anything beyond that.”
Officials at the Talladega Social Security Office said they were unable to comment on what services would or would not be available, but a call to the national Social Security help line referred to the agency’s web site.
According to the site, “Hearing offices remain open to conduct hearings before an administrative law judge. Social Security card centers are closed. Social Security supplemental security income payments to beneficiaries will continue with no change in payment dates.”
The site goes on to say that field offices would continue to offer services such as helping with benefit applications; assistance with appeal requests; changing addresses or direct deposit information; accepting death reports; verifying or changing citizenship status; replacing lost or missing payments; issuing critical payments; changing a representative payee and processing the change in living arrangements or income for SSI recipients.
The field offices will not be able to issue new or replacement Social Security cards, Medicare cards or issue proof of income letters.
Calls to the Veterans Administration offices in Pell City netted only busy signals Tuesday afternoon, but an email statement said, “The Alabama Department of Veterans Affairs officials are reassuring veterans and their families that services provided by the state agency will continue despite the federal government shutdown.”
The release says that all VA “medical facilities and clinics will remain fully operational, including inpatient and outpatient care, and other special care services. Veteran claims processing and payments in the compensation, pension, education and vocational rehabilitation programs will also continue through late October.”
The state VA will remain operational, “with services continuing at the county veterans service offices, veterans homes and state Veterans Cemetery at Spanish Fort.
The shutdown will impact the closing of national VA call centers and the discontinuation of claims appeals and public awareness activities.”
Staff at Talladega’s Army and Marine Recruiting Station said they could not comment on the current fiscal situation.
Contact Chris Norwood at email@example.com