Federal Government Shutdown Guidance

On October 1, 2023, the federal government may shut down all non-essential operations.  If the government shuts down, federal contracts and grants are expected to be impacted in several ways, described below.  Western has prepared contingency plans to allow federally-funded research, creative activities, and programs to continue without interruption, at least for the foreseeable future.  Unless otherwise notified by the funder, Principal Investigators may continue work on active grants and contracts, including payment of salaries, wages and other costs.  As long as the shutdown does not last too long, Western has the ability to support those costs until the government reopens and the University can be reimbursed. 

In the event of a federal shutdown: 

  • Each federal agency will issue their own shutdown guidance. (Refer to the link below).
  • Very few grants and contracts at Western are expected to be impacted in the short-term; however it is possible that some contracts may be subject to stop-work orders. Determinations will be made by each agency on a contract-by-contract basis. 
  • Expect delays, lack of communication and support from federal agencies. 
  • Agency staff may not be available for approvals or administrative functions. 
  • Research.gov and Grants.gov systems are expected to remain operational.  Proposal deadlines may therefore not be postponed unless an agency indicates otherwise in their shutdown guidance.   
  • Principal Investigators should plan to submit (on time) any progress reports that become due at any time during a shutdown. 
  • The review of proposals by federal agencies will be delayed. 
  • Agencies will not issue new awards or amendments for grants, cooperative agreements, and contracts. In addition, awards currently being processed by a federal agency, but not issued before October 1 will be delayed. 

Principal Investigators are encouraged to read The White House OMB Agency Contingency Plans for the agencies from which they receive research funding.


Page last updated 9/29/2023