Local businesses suffer at the expense of the government shutdown
Oklahoma City, Okla —
The partial government shutdown is starting to have a huge effect on some small businesses here in Oklahoma.
There are tens of thousands of people working for the Federal Aviation Administration who use temporary housing here in the metro.
Now that the F.A.A. is out of work, up to 98% of temporary housing business is gone.
According to Caleb Owens, the owner of Premier Rental Properties, "It's very frustrating. I mean, you're thinking these people are put in place to govern you and to look out for you and they're doing this kind of stuff. It really seems childish."
Owens is just one person in the Oklahoma City area who says the longer the government stays partially shut down, the closer they are to having to close shop.
"It's just a matter of survival,” Owens said, “it's a matter of surviving as a business. How long can we keep this up and stay, you know, in business? If everything gets going here within the next one to two weeks, we can stay in business. If it lasts two to three months, not only are we going to go out of business, a lot of our competitors are going to go out of business as well."
Turns out, Premier Rental Properties aren't the only ones struggling. Fox 25 also spoke with the owner of A&T Property Management, who says they're in the same boat.
Angela McPherson said, “We are having to downsize staff, of course, going into a third week. You can get through a couple weeks to a month, but going past that point, it would be, you know, it would just be devastating to us."
McPherson estimates her business is losing anywhere between $75,000 to $100,000 a month.
She and Owens both expressed how big the aviation industry is locally. They say with the thousands of employees missing from the area, hotels, restraints and other small businesses will also see the effect of the population change.
"They're going to lose revenue. Whenever you shut off that many people, there's going to be a huge bleed off affect," Owens said.
Other agencies that could soon be affected are food banks and S.N.A.P. benefits, which is the United States food stamp program.
Programs like it are only funded until the end of the month.
According to food banks, people in our state who get food stamps now, may be reaching out to food banks when they normally wouldn’t need to.
If you find yourself in a situation where you're without food, go to the regional food bank's website.