USDA market reports and FDA rulemaking are on hold, but the agencies continue to provide some critical services during the government shutdown.

A notice from the FDA states that in the absence of either an FY 2014 appropriation or a Continuing Resolution, agency operations will be limited to the following:

  • Emergency work involving the safety of human life or the protection of property.
  • Criminal law enforcement work.
  • Activities funded by carryover user fee balances, including user fee balances under the Prescription Drug User Fee Act (PDUFA), Generic Drug User Fee Amendments (GDUFA), Medical Device User Fee Amendments (MDUFA), Animal Drug User Fee Act (ADUFA), Animal Generic Drug User Fee Act (AGDUFA), and Family Smoking Prevention and Tobacco Control Act. Carryover user fee balances will only be spent on activities for which the fees are authorized under the Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act (FD&C Act).

FDA will not be able to accept any regulatory submissions for FY 2014 that require a fee payment and that are submitted during the lapse period.

At the USDA, department websites generally are dark, but each division has published contingency plans outlining procedures during the shutdown and services that will continue. The plans are available online, including those from the Agricultural Marketing Service, the Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service and the Food Safety and Inspection Service

During the World Dairy Expo in Madison Wisconsin last week, an informational FDA exhibit was minimally staffed, as was one from USDA. Another exhibit, for USDA’s National Animal Health Monitoring System, was set up and stocked with literature, along with a sign saying the exhibit would not be staffed because of the shutdown.