Deadline looms for DHS partial shutdown

The US Department of Homeland Security (DHS) is facing a partial shutdown, with employees forced to work for no pay due to a potential withdrawal of federal government funds.
Administrative and office staff would be sent home, which could affect day-to-day operations of the Transportation Security Administration (TSA), Customs and Border Protection (CBP).
DHS has been caught up in a wider political dispute between Republicans and Democrats over immigration reform, with the Republican-dominated Senate set to refuse to approve the department’s continued funding, due to run out on February 27.
According to reports, if the agency is shut down, 30,000 of its 230,000 employees will be furloughed but TSA officers at airports, border patrol agents and frontline law enforcement officials would be required to report to work without pay.
The dispute is similar to one last year in which budget wrangling between Democrats and Republicans almost led to US Customs shutting down operations.

While attempts to find a way out of the impasse continue, DHS secretary Jeh Johnson said that failing to find a permanent solution to the problem would also have serious consequences: “It is like trying to drive across country with no more than five gallons of gas in your tank, and you do not know when the next gas station will appear.”
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