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National Interagency Fire Center gets back to work following the government shutdown

Posted at 4:34 PM, Jan 29, 2019
and last updated 2019-01-29 18:34:54-05

BOISE — The 35-day government shutdown temporarily ended allowing some federal employees to get back to work, one of those agencies in Boise, the National Interagency Fire Center is now trying to make up for lost time.

Normally, NIFC uses the winter months to get their gear ready and perform training, but it is also an important time because that's when they also try to hire wildland firefighters for the upcoming season.

"The shutdown has caused some hiring delays," said Jessica Gardetto of NIFC. "Thankfully we have had human resources staff working even the last two weeks of the shutdown to make sure that we have all of our wildland firefighters hired and ready for the spring."

The BLM smokejumpers are busy sewing and preparing parachutes in an effort to catch up after missing 35 days of work and because the government might shutdown again the smokejumpers know they need to work quickly.

"The last 35-days have created a lot of pressure as far as getting a lot of work done in a short amount of time," said Gardetto. "Thankfully firefighters are very good at working under pressure."

Gardetto said she's confident that NIFC will be ready when wildfire season arrives.