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Nearly 25 Percent of Alaskans Face Financial Hardships in Government Shutdown

Published On: Dec 24 2013 06:34:16 AM AKST   Updated On: Oct 09 2013 01:33:18 PM AKDT

The partial government shutdown entered its eighth day on Tuesday and a possible default on federal debt is just nine days away.

If legislators in Washington don't come to an agreement about increasing the federal debt limit, Alaskans receiving social security checks could be affected. 

Right now, the federal debt limit stands at $16.7 trillion and the government is quickly approaching it. In Alaska, 84,875 people received a monthly social security check in December of 2012, according to the department’s website. 

"Some people would not get benefit payments on time whether Social Security, Veterans Benefits, even military pay could be delayed if we don't lift the debt ceiling," said Associated Press economic writer Chris Rugaber. 

According to the State of Alaska Department of Military and Veterans Affairs, Alaska has 77,866 veterans.  Calls to the office of Veterans Affairs were not returned.

There are at least 12 state programs that receive direct federal funding or grants that have entered a grey area as the shutdown drags on, including the Alaska Food Stamp Program and the Heating Assistance Program, which assists low-income households with home energy costs.