Court impacted by partial government shutdown

Washington, D.C., politics have impacted the U.S. Middle District Court’s stream of civil litigation cases and media reports.

Much of the district office staff working on civil litigation are being furloughed, due to the appropriation lapse and partial federal government shutdown, according to U.S. Attorney Peter J. Smith.

“All civil litigation in which the office is involved will be curtailed or postponed to the extent possible without compromising public safety or the protection of property, and always subject to the direction of the federal court,” Smith said Tuesday after Congress failed to prevent the shutdown affecting about 880,000 employees nationwide.

Smith said the district office won’t be able to respond readily to media inquiries and news releases will be limited to urgent matters involving public safety.

In addition, he added, the office’s website will not be updated and social media accounts will not be managed actively during the shutdown.

It doesn’t impact criminal ligitation and related work continues without interruption, he said. The office continues to receive communications from the public by mail, email and telephone.