By The Numbers

6 New Year’s resolutions the next shutdown could break

Shannon Mullen Oct 17, 2013

As of today, the government shutdown is over and Uncle Sam is open for business again … at least until Jan. 15.  

With some Republicans in the House vowing to restart the fight over spending cuts when we reach the next deadline, here are some New Year’s resolutions for 2014 that you might want to rethink in case of another shutdown:  

1. Quit smoking 

It won’t be as easy, especially if you’re planning to rely on the SmokeFreeTXT program from the National Institutes of Health and the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.  The program “was created to provide 24/7 encouragement, advice and tips” to help smokers quit for good — as long as the government is open. It was closed during the shutdown.  

2. Quit your job and start a new business 

You can’t apply for that loan from the U.S. Small Business Administration if the government is offline  

3. File your taxes early 

Not if you need help from the IRS tip line. The agency won’t answer during a shutdown, but all tax deadlines still apply, including Jan. 15 for individual quarterly tax payments. 

4. Spend some quality time with the family enjoying America’s scenery 

Don’t book your trip to the Grand Canyon or any of the other country’s more than 400 National Parks and museums, which go dark when federal funds dry up. 

5. Volunteer 

If you sign up to volunteer through AmeriCorps, you can’t get a second job during your service and you might not get your stipend if the federal government shuts down. 

6. Save more money 

At least don’t plan on saving it in the form of U.S. savings bonds. The U.S. Government might not be able to pay the interest if Congress doesn’t raise the debt ceiling.

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