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Local impact of government shutdown

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Updated: 9/30/2013 7:19 pm
TUPELO, Miss. (WTVA) - We caught up with a group who is on a trip from Nashville to Natchez along the Natchez Trace Parkway.

They say you can't beat the scenery, especially on a bike.

Carol Shaul from Tennessee said, "You can see all the sights. You see the turkeys, deer and other animals along the Trace. It's gorgeous. It's so well kept. It's trimmed and beautiful."

We caught them taking a break at the visitors center in Tupelo.

Restrooms, campgrounds and visitors centers will close their doors on the Trace and in other national parks around the country if a government shutdown happens.

Don Crisel of Illinois said, "I hate to see it because that's all you have out here. It's these service areas where you can stop, relax and see what's going on in the area."

Essential services of the government like border patrol and air traffic control would continue even if there's a partial government shutdown.

However for agencies like the Department of Interior, which the Trace falls under, an estimated 80 percent of its employees would be furloughed.

The Natchez Trace Parkway currently employs 160.

Officials would not speculate on exactly which jobs would be affected.

Dwight Hale of Kentucky said, "Both parties are arguing and fussing and seem like they don't really care about the general public. We are out here to enjoy what our tax money paid for."

This group also says they realize they may have to take a lot more detours on their Trace trip as the countdown to a shutdown grows closer.

If there is a government shutdown the Natchez Trace Parkway itself would stay open to traffic.

There would be a limited number of employees such as Parkway Rangers who'll remain on the job.
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