The U.S. government shutdown – less than 13 hours old – has already hit construction, according to one industry group.
The scheduled release of Census Bureau-complied construction spending for August today was canceled due to the federal spending impasse, the Associated General Contractors of America said.
“It is hard to get a sense of where the industry is heading when basic construction spending data isn't available,” said Ken Simonson, the association's chief economist. “Unfortunately, the lack of federal spending data likely foreshadows a decline in federal construction spending until the government reopens.”
With the GOP-controlled U.S. House demanding that funding for the Affordable Care Act, aka Obamacare, be slashed and the Democratic Senate just as adamant that it won't be, Congress failed to pass a spending plan by the Oct. 1 fiscal year deadline. That led to the first American government shutdown in 17 years early this morning.
The association urged Congress and the White House to quickly reach an agreement, saying federal projects may be delayed the longer the shutdown lasts.
“Depending on how long the government is closed, construction workers are likely to miss out on new job opportunities,” said AGC chief executive Stephen E. Sandherr. “This shutdown poses a real risk of undermining the industry's long-awaited recovery.”