Government Shutdown?

What is the likelihood of a federal government shutdown and how would it affect you?

A bipartisan group of Congressional leaders have been working for weeks to agree on details on funding for the 2011 budget. The current budget year has been funded in short-term increments with less than 6 months to go before the start of fiscal year 2012.  There are many questions about what programs will receive the largest cuts and concerns that short-term funding has disrupted project planning and hiring.  Congressman Scott supports a bipartisan effort to cut the federal deficit and believes that some compromise is needed to make this happen.

In the meantime, a segment of the Republican caucus threatens to shutdown the government if all of their demands are not met.  The Wall Street Journal reported that a shutdown will cost more money to private contractors who will have to lay off employees (link here for article). These contracts will end up costing the government more over the long-term.

The Boston Globe reports that not all government services would shut down.  Prisons would remain open and border security would be active, yet parks and museums would be closed (link here for article).  In addition, several hundred thousand employees would be furloughed.  It is uncertain what affect this would have on the economy.  PBS ran an article, which profiled how previous government shutdowns negatively affected citizens who needed passports, wanted to open Medicare plans, and seek VA assistance (link here for article). 

What are your concerns about the deficit, a potential government shutdown and cuts to services?