The United States government reopened Friday for business, ending a 16-day shutdown that roiled global financial markets and fueled international instability.
International air traffic is expected to return to normal, though some delays are expected as air traffic control facilities that were affected by the shutdown receive restocked equipment. The TSA, meanwhile, must return to administering “all screening operations, including working with airport stakeholders to ensure airport security for travelers during this holiday travel season.”
Some agencies re-opened Friday including the Justice Department and the State Department, but most agencies remained closed. The TSA has said it will take about a week to return to full staffing. The Director of National Intelligence said Thursday he had delayed retirements by one week to ensure more workers remained on the job, while the EPA said it was working to employ as many people as possible after the lapse in funding.
During the shutdown, officials working in the CIA, Homeland Security, Homeland Security Investigations, Federal Trade Commission, Internal Revenue Service, FBI, National Transportation Safety Board, Nuclear Regulatory Commission, U.S. Patent and Trademark Office, Secret Service, U.S. Marshal Service, Federal Bureau of Investigation, Marine Corps and U.S. Marshals Service were deemed essential and paid during the shutdown. The White House, State Department, Justice Department, Census Bureau, U.S. Bureau of Ocean Energy Management, U.S. Forest Service, U.S. Bureau of Reclamation, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, U.S. Marshals Service, National Park Service, Social Security Administration, Food and Drug Administration, National Institutes of Health, U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services and World Bank will have to be notified before the sites are reopened.
Without the money, the U.S. Coast Guard suspended many of its operations, including harbor security and maritime safety inspection. The commandant requested additional funding to allow those functions to be resumed.
President Donald Trump, who shut down the government to secure funding for a wall on the southern border, said that the shutdown was difficult. “If we didn’t have that wall, you wouldn’t even be talking about it,” he said at a Thursday event at the White House.
Reporters asked about the border wall, with Trump doubling down on his demand for more border security, including more funding for the wall and more agents.
“Some people say, “We have tremendous security,” Trump said. “But I will say we have tremendous security without a wall.”
The Department of Housing and Urban Development temporarily halted outreach to tenants who may be facing deportation because of Trump’s policies. The Secret Service temporarily suspended operations at some of its offices, which houses the presidential family. The Federal Bureau of Investigation, Secret Service, U.S. Marshals Service, and U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service ceased most operations, though a small number of staff returned. The FAA suspended all operations.
TSA checkpoints at airports will reopen only when the Federal Aviation Administration has fully staffed airport security officers and equipment, the agency said. Officers who had been furloughed will return to work through Friday.
“TSA will begin re-assigning impacted Officers to expedite security screenings,” the agency said in a statement.
TSA workers are among the hundreds of thousands of federal workers who have been deemed essential and kept working during the shutdown.
The Federal Emergency Management Agency also has workers furloughed but will be open for business, officials said. Still, FEMA and the Department of Agriculture will take longer to reopen because the agency divisions that once were fully staffed have undergone reorganization or have other operations that have been scaled back in response to the Trump administration’s cuts.
It is unclear whether travelers would notice any changes in flight schedule to U.S. airports. According to the Airports Council International, only 13 percent of all international flights to the United States were impacted, and the European Union lost $190 million because some scheduled flights were delayed.
Despite the funding lapse, few travel disruptions are expected. Furloughed employees are entitled to return to work, many will be on leave when the shutdown ends and some federal workers who have returned to their jobs will continue working without pay.
This story has been updated with additional information.