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Island mostly unaffected by fed shutdown — so far

Services  Shelter Islanders depend on from the federal government, such as Social Security checks, are unaffected by those federal agencies that aren’t functioning with the normal contingent of workers.

The town’s grant writing consultant, Jennifer Mesiano Higham of Mesiano Consulting, said Tuesday morning she’s experienced some frustration trying to get information from federal agencies like the United States Department of Agriculture for some grants she is structuring.

None are pertinent to pending Shelter Island applications, she said. The frustration comes when she’s seeking information to file applications for future grants and not getting responses from certain agencies.

Supervisor Gary Gerth said the shutdown, to date, has had no direct affect so far on Town Hall business.

Town Attorney Bob DeStefano Jr. said that there had been concerns that discussions with the Army Corps of Engineers to assist with the Reel Point project might be stalled, but the Army Corps is “still up and running.”

There might be some slowdowns in getting data from the United States Geological Survey that monitors Island water quantity and quality, Mr. DeStefano said. But he doesn’t think it’s critical in the short run.

Shelter Island School has also not been affected by the shutdown, according to Superintendent Christine Finn. She and District Business Leader Linda Haas conferred and determined they are still receiving money to augment the school lunch program and other federal funds are continuing to flow.