The Greene County Soil and Water Conservation District, which shares equipment and office space with a federal agency, says it is still open but cannot use phones and email or access government data.
The district office located on Burnett Drive shares a 43,560 square foot building with two federal agencies — the Natural Resources Conservation Service and the Farm Services Agency.
The phone system, email, internet services and a vehicle used by the office, but purchased with federal dollars were off limits when the federal shutdown started Tuesday morning, Don Leeds, the district administrator, said.
Leeds said the district activated a cell phone, 937-308-2673, in an attempt to continue local operations despite the federal shutdown.
“We’re hoping with the equipment we do have, we will be able to do our jobs,” he said.
The conservation district provides services and assistance related to water quality, erosion prevention, land use planing, drainage and conservation education to county residents.
The agency has five workers and an $411,000 annual budget for 2013. The department is mainly funded through a $200,000 grant from county commissioners coupled with state funds and federal funded equipment and supplies.
“We’re looking at how long is this going to last,” Leeds said. “…We all know it’s eventually going to get resolved.”