As the partial federal shutdown continued, President Obama traveled to a Maryland construction company on Oct. 3 and criticized House Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio) for not bringing a Senate-approved stopgap spending bill up for a floor vote. Boehner repeatedly called on Obama and other Democrats to negotiate to end the shutdown and raise the U.S. debt limit.
Meanwhile, new impacts on construction were emerging. A bright note was Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel's Oct. 5 news that the Pentagon was recalling about 90% of its 350,000 furloughed civilian employees. He used an expanded interpretation of the Pay Our Military Act, signed on Sept. 30. The Naval Facilities Engineering Command, as of Oct. 7, was able to recall most of its 18,000 civilian workers, says spokeswoman Virginia Bueno.