Sioux Falls TSA Screening Officers Still Getting Paid During Government Shutdown
SIOUX FALLS, S.D. – The government shutdown is leaving airports short-staffed tonight. Thousands of TSA workers aren’t getting a paycheck, so many are sending a message that they won’t work for free. The Miami and Houston airports each had to shut down a terminal this weekend.
While some TSA employees nationwide are calling in sick, many of us are still heading to work. It’s business as usual for Dean Vogel, who just flew to the Sioux Falls Regional Airport (FSD) from Ohio for a work trip. He says he was a little stressed about the shutdown.
“I heard it on the news last night and I’m going, well, do I walk in and are they going to have signs up that say you know ‘TSA is shut down,’” said Vogel.
Fortunately, his traveling experience was uneventful.
“[There were] no real issues that I was kind of concerned there could be with all of the government shutdowns going on, but here we are,” said Fogel.
Maxx Hickey, a Sioux Falls resident, is just starting his business travels.
“I’ll probably leave a little earlier in Orlando but it didn’t really cross my mind here in town,” said Hickey.
Sure enough, Hickey got through security quickly. That’s because it’s just another day at FSD. Screening officers at the Sioux Falls Airport are still receiving a weekly paycheck.
FSD is unique in that its workers are privately contracted from BOS security out of Georgia. This means they’re not relying on the government for a paycheck. FSD is one of 22 airports nationwide to partake in this private “Screening Partnership Program.”
Still, the travelers we talked to say other airports don’t seem to bad yet.
“It was fine,” said Kristina Woldorf, a Massachusetts resident visiting for her friend’s baby shower. “Honestly, I was worried but it. I was TSA Pre-check so I think that helped, but the lines weren’t that bad and everyone was still so friendly.”
Ironically, TSA media relations is closed during the government shutdown, so they did not return our calls.