Greater Louisville Inc. The Metro Chamber of Commerce
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January 22, 2019 3:21pm

GLI joins coalition urging an end to the government shutdown

GLI joined a coalition of more than 300 business groups from across the country in calling for an end to the government shutdown. In a letter from January 17, the U.S. Chamber-led coalition urged Congress and White House to “immediately take steps to restore the full operation of the federal government.”

On Monday, the country entered its fifth week of a partial government shutdown, as Congress and the Trump Administration have proven unable to reach an agreement over funding for border security. Meanwhile, economists are projecting significant consequences for economic growth. The White House’s Council of Economic Advisors, for example, estimates a reduction to quarterly economic growth of 0.13 percentage points per week due to the shutdown. That translates to a loss of roughly one-half of a percent of growth for the first quarter of 2019. (For context, the economy grew at a rate of 2.0 percent in the first quarter of 2018.)

The U.S. Chamber’s chief economist, J.D. Foster, explains that a variety of factors in a government shutdown drive down growth, including decreased federal spending, lost productivity, regulatory and permitting bottlenecking, a lack of guidance from agencies like the SEC, and paperwork and processing slowdowns, just to name a few. “The longer the shutdown continues, the more these indirect effects will weigh on the economy, subtracting billions from GDP and reducing jobs and wage hikes. The bottom line is, the government’s partial shutdown is putting an unwelcome damper on the economy,” writes Foster.

To continue the positive growth trends our economy has seen in the past few years, GLI strongly encourages the Trump administration and members of Congress—especially members of the Greater Louisville congressional delegation—to work together and end this shutdown.

Read the full letter below.

TO THE PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES AND MEMBERS OF CONGRESS:

On behalf of the American business community, we urge Congress and the administration to immediately take steps to restore the full operation of the federal government.

The current shutdown – now the longest in American history – is causing significant and in some cases lasting damage to families, businesses, and the economy as a whole. The harm is well documented and continues to compound with each passing day.

Since the shutdown began, various compromises have been floated by both Republicans and Democrats. There are numerous paths forward that would allow for the government to be reopened that should be acceptable to all parties. Failing to seize on one of those compromises that can pass Congress and be signed into law is unacceptable.

The time to act, the time to end this shutdown is now so that we can keep the economy moving forward.