Broken Clouds
H 51° L 44°
  • cloudy-day
    Current Conditions
    Broken Clouds. H 51° L 44°
  • rain-day
    Showers. H 51° L 44°
  • cloudy-day
    Cloudy. H 51° L 44°

Wsb news on-demand

00:00 | 00:00


Wsb traffic on-demand

00:00 | 00:00


Wsb weather on-demand

00:00 | 00:00

Local federal workers miss their first paycheck in government shutdown

Local federal workers miss their first paycheck in government shutdown

Local federal workers miss their first paycheck in government shutdown
Photo Credit: � 2019 Cox Media Group.

The shutdown, rooted in a political standoff over southern border wall funding, is set to become the longest in U.S. history on Saturday

Local federal workers miss their first paycheck in government shutdown

For the past five years, David Kirsch has worked to ensure Atlanta Airport runways are safe. Now the Marine veteran says he’s having tough conversations with his colleagues and wife.

“It’s the sad truth, but we may need to consider selling our home,” Kirsch said on Friday.

Hours earlier, Kirsch had taken a look at his first paycheck to read $0.00, joining 800,000 other unpaid federal workers who are grappling with the partial government shutdown.

The shutdown, rooted in a political standoff over southern border wall funding, is set to become the longest in U.S. history on Saturday, when it will move into its 22nd day.

[READ: Government shutdown could impact air traffic planning ahead of Super Bowl]

Kirsch, who doubles as local chapter president for the Professional Aviation Safety Specialists Union,
echoed colleagues in citing low morale amid the uncertainty. The union represents personnel who maintain runway operations and inspect planes.

“The stress is pretty intense,” he told Channel 2 investigative reporter Nicole Carr.

Earlier in the week, Carr spoke with air traffic controller Dan McCabe, who noted the same morale problems among his colleagues in Metro Atlanta.

They’re charged with coordinating 1,500 extra flights a day for the Super Bowl, but planning for the flight surge has ended because of the shutdown.

McCabe’s national NATC union sued the Trump administration on Friday over workers’ missed pay.


Meanwhile, a spokeswoman for GoFundMe confirmed the online fundraising site has dedicated a team to verify a surge in campaigns centered around the government shutdown.

“We deploy proprietary technical tools and have multiple processes in place to verify the identity of campaign organizers and the beneficiary of the campaign,” wrote Katherine Cichy in an email to Channel 2.

“Before money is transferred, an individual’s information, including their banking information, must be verified by our payment processor.”

The government has taken down online advice to workers that they barter with creditors during the shutdown, but has provided alternate sample letters on how to negotiate late payments.

Kirsch and McCabe told Carr those negotiations only go so far.

“We have all these obligations that we need to maintain with our debtors and, honestly, we’re at that point where we just don’t know what to do,” Kirsch said, saying his mortgage lender offered a 15-day extension.

Passengers speaking with TSA agents in Atlanta’s airport Friday say they stand with federal workers in saying enough is enough.

“I have to applaud them for wanting to come out and do a job, but you can’t have the best of attitudes when you don’t know how you're gonna pay your bills, or when you’re gonna get another check,” said passenger Anita Boswell.

“To me that’s what really makes a crisis -- 'What? We’re sittin’ up here talkin’ about an emergency?” she continued, as she and her family made their way through the Domestic Terminal. “That’s an emergency when you’ve got almost a million people that’s off work.That’s what needs to be addressed immediately."

“I’m not happy with it at all,” said passenger Shaun White. “If it affects them, it affects all of us.”

Local lawmakers weigh in on government shutdown

As the partial government shutdown continued with no end in sight, members of Georgia’s congressional delegation are weighing in on the controversy, and their responses are following party lines.

Georgia’s U.S. Sen. David Perdue issued a statement condemning the shutdown but supporting the president’s call for a new border wall.

“It should not have come to this point,” Perdue wrote. “Congress should have already handled border security and disaster relief for Georgia and other states impacted by historic hurricanes and wildfires last year. President Trump is right to call the situation on the southern border a national security crisis, and he is going to hold the line. I am working with the Trump Administration to secure the border, find a solution to fund the government and minimize the effect on all federal departments that are impacted.”

Friday, Georgia’s U.S. Sen. Johnny Isakson joined other senators in re-introducing legislation that would prevent future government shutdowns.

“It is wrong to continue the constant threat of a government shutdown, and Americans should expect their government to function and budget responsibly,” Isakson wrote in a statement. “This is one proposal that will work to end these irresponsible shutdowns that harm Georgians and Americans.”

Other lawmakers took to Twitter to express their views on the shutdown and the proposed border wall.

“It’s time to end this shutdown and fund the federal government,” Rep. David Scott, D),13th District, tweeted.

“Small business owners and every taxpayer deserves a government that works,” Rep. Lucy McBath, D), 6th District, tweeted.

Rep. Barry Loudermilk, R, 11th District, tweeted, “The president is right. We need to build the border wall.”

“It’s time to end this shutdown,” Rep. Doug Collins, R, 9th District, tweeted. “It’s time to come together and secure our border.”

Read More


  • Maine's giant spinning ice disk that quickly gained international fame seems to have met its end. The formation in the Presumpscot River in Greater Portland stopped rotating Wednesday, two days after a video of its mesmerizing movement was widely shared on social media. The roughly 100-yard (91-meter) wide disk is lodged against the river's edge, preventing it from moving. Meteorologist Ryan Breton tells the Portland Press Herald if the disk freezes into place, 'that might be the end of it.' The ice formation is believed to have formed naturally where there's a circular current that creates a whirlpool effect. Social media users compared it to an alien spacecraft and the moon, and ducks used it as a big raft.
  • A star athlete at a high school in Douglas County, Georgia, is being held in jail without bond after police arrested him on murder charges. >> Watch the news report here Police arrested Jalen Morgan, 17, on the Alexander High School campus last week because they said he was part of a conspiracy to commit murder in May of last year. Investigators said seven people were involved, and Morgan, along with his cousin LeAndrea Morgan, acted as the lookouts for the crime. “Two of these individuals had pre-existing issues with each other, and they showed up in an attempt to commit this act,” said Sgt. Jesse Hambrick, with the Douglas County Sheriff's Office. WSB-TV’s Tyisha Fernandes learned that the intended target for the crime was not the person shot and killed. The documents say that during the robbery, one of the suspects fired a shot at the intended target – Kenneth McClary – but McClary shot back and killed the suspect. Now, all seven suspects are being held in jail without bond. >> Read more news stories  Police arrested the suspects just a few weeks after the slaying, and last week they arrested the Morgan cousins. They've wrapped the case. “These last two were the last two that they expect, and they’re ready to move forward from there,” Hambrick said. Each suspect is facing several charges, and one is accused of being a gang member. Investigators said he's part of the Bloods. They're saying he committed the crime with the intent to maintain and increase his status as a known gang member.
  • Crews are on site this morning to repair damage caused by a MARTA train derailment.  The derailed cars are still stuck on the tracks more than a day after the accident.  MARTA officials say two cars on an out-of-service train derailed around 9 p.m. Tuesday at the airport station, causing train service to stop on the red and gold lines. No passengers were on board and the rail operator was not hurt.  We're at the scene as crews prepare to bring in a giant crane to the scene and we'll have the impact for travelers, on Channel 2 Action News This Morning Passengers trying to get to the airport must get off at the College Park station, where a shuttle train and buses are taking people back and forth. The agency is investigating what caused the issue. TRENDING STORIES: Forsyth County man charged with plot to attack White House, FBI says High school football star arrested at school on murder charges Boy suspended for unintentionally using counterfeit money in lunch line
  • A Tennessee schoolteacher is accused of sex crimes involving a teen. >> Watch the news report here Jasmine Edmond, 24, was arrested Monday. She is charged with sexual battery by an authority figure. Edmond, who is a teacher at Power Center Academy High School in Memphis, began working at the school in August 2018, according to a letter sent to parents. She taught several different math classes. The alleged incident happened in November 2017, prior to Edmond’s employment with PCA High. She was employed by Shelby County Schools at the time, according to the letter, which was written by PCA High Principal Antonio Ryan. >> On Fox13Memphis.com: Man accused of attacking woman he forcibly held into prostitution, police say Ryan said the school completed a background check on Edmond, but it didn’t show anything about the alleged crime. Edmond is accused of engaging in sexual contact with someone between the ages of 13 and 17. At the time of the unlawful sexual contact, she 'had supervisory power over (the victim) by virtue of her occupational status and used the power to accomplish sexual contact,' according to the indictment. Edmond was released from jail on bond. WHBQ reached out to both Gestalt Community Schools – which operates PCA High – and Shelby County Schools for comment.  SCS confirmed Edmond was placed on administrative leave on March 27, 2018, to conduct an investigation into the allegations. She did not return to the district.  >> Read more news stories  Below is the statement given by SCS officials regarding her arrest: 'Following the reported allegations, the employee was placed on administrative leave on March 27 so that the District and law enforcement could conduct a thorough investigation. This is standard District procedure. The employee did not return to the school for the remainder of the year and is no longer employed by the District.' Gestalt Community Schools also responded with the following statement: 'We were shocked and disappointed when Jasmine Edmond was arrested. She was a new teacher at Power Center Academy, and we performed a thorough background check last summer, which showed no indication of such behavior. She is currently on administrative leave from Gestalt Community Schools pending further investigation. Although we have no knowledge at this time that her behavior impacted any of our scholars, we are doing our own internal due diligence. We will fully assist the Memphis Police Department with their investigation.' Read more here.
  • Phoenix police are looking for answers after a dead newborn baby was discovered at an Amazon fulfillment center Wednesday. According to KTVK, the body was found about 8:30 p.m. in a women's bathroom at the facility on West Lower Buckeye Road, authorities said. Officials said the baby was inside a garbage can, KNXV reported. >> Read more news stories  Amazon called the incident 'terribly sad and tragic' in a statement. 'We are working with local authorities to support their investigation,' the statement read, according to KTVK. 'The safety and wellness of our team is our top priority.' Read more here or here.
  • With the federal minimum wage of $7.25 cents an hour unchanged for ten years, Democrats on Wednesday unveiled a plan in Congress to more than double that pay rate over a six year period, arguing it’s past time for lawmakers to make it easier for working Americans to earn enough money to support their families. “President Trump isn’t going to stick up for American workers – we Democrats will,” Senate Democratic Leader Charles Schumer said to cheers at a U.S. Capitol news conference. “No person working full-time in America should be living in poverty,” said Rep. Bobby Scott (D-VA), who will lead the charge for a higher minimum wage in the House as chairman of the Education and Labor Committee. “The current $7.25 an hour federal minimum wage is a starvation wage,” said Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-VT). 'No American working full time should be living in poverty,' House Education and Labor Chairman Bobby Scott said when introducing legislation to increase the hourly minimum wage to $15. The last time Congress raised the federal minimum wage was in 2007. pic.twitter.com/nypZl0CX7L — POLITICO (@politico) January 16, 2019 “Increasing the federal minimum wage is the right thing to do,” said Rep. Stephanie Murphy (D-FL). “I believe this legislation would provide a boost to businesses and the broader economy.” While the Congress has not touched the minimum wage since Democrats pushed through an increase in 2007, individual states have taken a different approach, as now 29 states have a higher minimum wage than the feds. Just last year, voters in Missouri approved raising the minimum wage to $12/hour by 2023; Arkansas voters approved a minimum wage going up to $11 by 2021. “The last time we were in charge, one of the first things we did was raise the minimum wage,” said House Majority Leader Steny Hoyer (D-MD), referring to a 2007 law approved by a Democratic Congress and signed by President George W. Bush. “It was not enough then,” Hoyer said of the $7.25 per hour federal wage. “It is clearly not enough now.” The $15 per hour wage – known by some groups as the “Fight for 15” – certainly has a good chance at getting through the House, now that Democrats in charge; but it faces an uphill fight in the U.S. Senate. Our #FightFor15 Sisters and Brothers welcoming members of Congress to this afternoon's announcement of the #RaiseTheWage Act of 2019. pic.twitter.com/rza7EjsAfP — Fight For 15 (@fightfor15) January 16, 2019 “A living wage for all workers helps business, families, and the economy,” said Rep. Mike Doyle (D-PA). “The steady increase is good for workers, good for business, and good for the economy,” said Rep. Joe Courtney (D-CT). “No American working full time should live in poverty.” A section-by-section review of the bill can be found here. The actual legislative text is here.