If the government shutdown drags on for weeks, industries regulated by it like the car industry could be impacted, creating devastating domino effects in local communities that rely on the revenue.
In 1996, industry experts say newer models shipped from overseas were delayed from getting into showrooms because of similar situations.
“We’re in a good position because of where our cars are coming from in the U.S.,” said Billy Korum, General Manager of Bill Korum’s Puyallup Nissan.
Furloughed federal agency workers could create other roadblocks because they’re forced to stay home.
Dealers can’t sell a car unless The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) approves information on required stickers.
“It shows you what the price is and where the parts are coming from,” said Korum.
The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration has postponed all crash tests and safety recalls.
While most 2014 models squeaked by before the shutdown, not all of them did. Those cars can’t be sold for now.
Car sales are crucial for communities like the City of Fife. Nearly a quarter of its revenue comes from car sales taxes.
Pierce Transit is experiencing a 9.6% increase in tax revenue from last year. If the shutdown goes to December, officials expect a hit.
While dealerships are unsure what will happen, September car sales marked the first year-over-year decline in 27 months.