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Colorado’s Badly Needed Flood Repairs Could Hit Major Snag

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Heavy equipment being used to start clearing Highway 34 (credit: CBS)

Heavy equipment being used to start clearing Highway 34 (credit: CBS)

DENVER (CBS4) – A ripple effect might be felt in Colorado if there’s a government shut down next week as road repairs could hit a major snag.

The Colorado National Guard has been on the ground and in the air rescuing Coloradans trapped by the flood waters. Now their mission along with help from the Utah National Guard is to repair and replace roadways and bridges.

“The community is very in need of roadways right now. We have winter coming on and in Colorado winter can start in September,” Cpt. Darin Overstreet with the Colorado National Guard said.

As the already tight time frame shrinks even more, the federally funded missions could hit a bump in the road if a partial government shutdown takes place Monday if Congress fails to act.

Vice President Joe Biden toured the damaged areas Monday and asserted that relief efforts will not be affected by what happens in Washington.

“The truth of the matter is there’s reason to be scared, but not in terms of disaster relief,” Biden said. “None of the federal assistance that we’re providing, none of it, is going to be impacted even if there is a government shutdown.”

The National Guard says it’s too soon to tell how that would play out.

“At this point really there’s no way to tell how any possible shutdown would be implemented because there’s so many ways they could work funding,” Overstreet said.

It’s critical to continue the work already underway.

“This really important that the units be able to get in and get working and knock out some of these roadway issues so the communities can be connected,” Overstreet said.

The Utah National Guard is expected to send more than 100 engineers to work on Highway 36 between Estes Park and Lyons if the shutdown is avoided.

Colorado Floods: How To Help

The recent floods are impacting families and communities throughout Colorado, so CBS4 has compiled a list of ways you can support the local communities impacted by the floods.

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