SACRAMENTO (CBS13) — As a Transportation Security Inspector for the TSA, Carlos Lemus still had to report to work during the government shutdown, although he wasn’t getting paid. So when a deal was reached Friday to re-open for three weeks, he was thrilled.
“Well I’m relieved because I’m the sole earner for my family,” Lemus said.READ MORE: NorCal Heatwave Expected To Bring More Triple-Digit Temps To The Valley; No Power Shortages Anticipated
Lemus’ wife stays at home home with his son, who’s still a toddler. They were fortunate to have some savings, but after missing two paychecks, finances are tight.
“We were taking money out of our savings. Fortunately, the food bank here in Yolo helped us federal workers out, so I was pretty happy with that,” he said.
Lemus is just one of some 800,000 federal workers affected by the longest government shutdown in history.
A 15-year TSA employee who asked only to be identified as Johnny spoke to us about his situation after finishing his shift at the Sacramento International Airport on Saturday.
“We’re here to do our job. Whether they pay us or not we’re here to do our job,” he said.READ MORE: Sacramento Highway 99 Closure Now In Place: How To Get Around It
Johnny is hopeful the politicians will do theirs.
“I hope this is it. I hope they stop doing the schoolyard stuff and get down to business,” he said.
Lemus said much the same.
“We elect our officials to represent us and get the job done. It’s ridiculous that no one can come to a consensus and reach an accord and get us off the hook,” Lemus said.
But for now, at least, Lemus is optimistic and thankful a check is soon on its way.
“We’ve saved, but…if this goes on any longer I might have to get another job,” he said.MORE NEWS: West Oakland Home Converted To Mini Museum About Black Panthers; Will Open Juenteenth
As for when federal workers will receive their back-pay, an exact date is still unknown, but government officials have said it could be as early as next week.