HELENA, Mont. (AP) — Glacier and Yellowstone national parks' gates are closed. Montana's national forests are open, but it may be hard to find a U.S. Forest Service ranger. Civilians with the Montana National Guard and at Malmstrom Air Force Base face furloughs.
The effects of the U.S. government shutdown were beginning to be felt in Montana on Tuesday as federal offices closed. Most of the state's more than 12,000 federal employees were sent home while those determined essential stayed but were unsure when their next paycheck would come.
Emergency personnel such as law-enforcement officers are still on the job. Federal courts are holding hearings, the airports are still operating, the mail is being delivered and the Indian Health Service is still providing health care on Indian reservations.
But other services have been temporarily closed, from the Farm Service Agency's 49 Montana offices to the U.S. Census Bureau's population data on its website.
Archery hunters on the Charles M. Russell National Wildlife Refuge will be asked to leave by U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service law enforcement officials, refuge manager Rick Potts said.
"We have been placed in an untenable position where we must ask the owners of this refuge to respect that order and leave," Potts told The Billings Gazette.
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