Stateside Commissaries Closed in Government Shutdown

commissary-III

Stock your fridge and brace yourself! With the government shutdown Oct. 1 commissaries stateside will be closed starting Oct. 2, according to officials with the Defense Commissary Agency (DeCA).

They will be open Oct. 1, the first official day of the shutdown, so that they can offload perishable foods, they said.

“In the event of a shutdown, stateside commissaries, including Alaska and Hawaii, will be open for a full business day on Oct. 1 to reduce the amount of perishables on-hand before beginning a systematic closure process to account for unsold products and secure facilities,” officials said in a statement released this afternoon.

UPDATE: We visited the Fort Campbell, Ky. commissary on shutdown day. Click here to see what we found.

It was not clear if that means perishable foods will be sold at a reduced cost in the event of the shutdown or not.

Stores overseas in all OCONUS locations except Alaska and Hawaii will remain open, they said.

“We are acutely aware of the hardships placed on all our customers if we cannot deliver their commissary benefit,” said Joseph Jeu, DeCA’s director said in the statement.”However, because of their geographic location, our servicemembers and their families overseas have a more critical dependence on commissaries, and we are prepared to continue that support.”

If Congress cannot pass a budget or continuing resolution that creates funding for all aspects of the US government by the end of the fiscal year on Sept. 30, the government will be forced to shut down, ending many services seen as “non-essential” until funding is created. If the shutdown extends into mid-October servicemembers will not receive a mid-month paycheck, but will instead be given “back pay” after funding is passed by Congress and signed by President Barrack Obama. Many civilian workers will be also be temporarily furloughed and will not receive back pay.

If a shutdown occurs on-base schools and child care centers will remain open and Exchanges will continue to operate as well as most services at on-base hospitals. MWR programs, however, would likely halt.

Check out this Military.com article for more information on how a shutdown could impact you.

The last time the government came to the brink of a shutdown, in 2011, the commissaries were among the services that the Defense Department chose to keep open, after initially announcing that they would close. That shutdown was avoided in a last minute government funding deal between the House and Senate.

About the Author

Amy Bushatz
Amy is the editor in chief of Military.com’s spouse and family blog SpouseBuzz.com. A journalist by trade, Amy also covers spouse and family news for Military.com where she is the managing editor of spouse and family content. An Army wife and mother of two, Amy has been featured as a subject matter expert on CNN.com, NPR, Fox News, NBC, CBS, ABC and BBC as well as in the New York Times, Wall Street Journal and Washington Post. Follow her on twitter @amybushatz.

64 Comments on "Stateside Commissaries Closed in Government Shutdown"

  1. I have an idea, how about instead of cutting our military's pay and benefits…we cut the Congressmen, Senators, and President's benefits and pay. Heck, their pay and benefits combined would probably pay off the debt instantly!

  2. Since they just passed an extension today, does that mean the commissary will remain open during that extension?

  3. I think this is bull crap. I bet the football players and all those sports people will still get paid. this is messed up. why is it that people who fight for this country get the short end of the stick when then people who sit in their butts and people who just play stupid sport get payed so well and don't have to worry about nothing. it makes me sick how our soldiers are being treated. I think Jami VB has the right idea. Why don't the congressman, senators, president and all them get their pay cut off and see how they like it. hell they can afford it. I am sure the million dollar houses will suvive. Its going to eventually come down to no one getting into the military at all and we will have no one to protect us anymore. I wonder how the president would like that

  4. If you want to blame anyone, look at the tea-partiers in Congress, not the President, for this fiasco. They would rather shut down the government and default on the nation’s debt (lowering the nation’s credit rating and raising interest on loans) than allow Obamacare to exist. Just whose interests are they representing? Not mine and probably not yours.

  5. And I think it’s all the governments fault including the president they need to be working for a solution not comparing whose ego and stubbornness will out win. Obama could just as easily push those issues aside and change something’s but no everyone has am agenda and wants their own way and why would they care they will get a paycheck shut down or not

  6. The only solution is for voters to stop electing people who do not believe in government !

  7. You obviously don’t listen to what they say. You only hear what the democrats say. You should listen to both sides UNBIASEDLY and then decide who wants what is best for the military and working America.

  8. Scare tactic…it will not happen, never does…that dog won’t hunt…

  9. Service members will get paid. Their pay is protected so that if the government was to shut down or even eliminated then they still get their pay. Everyone else will not have their pay promised. This needs to be taken care of though. This is happening way too much.If they cant do their job then they need to lose it just like everyone else

  10. Heaven forbid that stupid insurance bill passes….come on and look at this. If the person does not want insurance you can't make them.
    Just get everything passes so we can quit stressing whether or not we will get paid. As yes they can take away our pay!! We are govt workers and it has been all over the news….NO PAY FOR SOLDIES OR GOVT WORKERS!!! But sure as heck congress and the president gets paid on time!

  11. Where did this info come from? It is not on the DeCA website or any other location I can find.

  12. the first mel | September 27, 2013 at 10:40 pm |

    I feel bad for the people who work at the commissary. They won't be working, so no paycheck for them. I'm sure some of them rely on that income to pay their bills.

  13. I am a military spouse and when the governmenrt tried taking away my husbands pay, it didnt happen. We still got paid as usual but now with having my daughter and bills it stresses me out thinking theres a chance we might not get paid.

  14. I work at the commissary and today we got our "notice" that if the government shuts down we will be furloughed starting the 2nd of Oct. and yes most people who work at the commissary depend on their paychecks to live so this does affect us.

  15. Active duty members will get paid, if not now then later. Us civilians who work for them….now we will NOT be paid period. Oh, but no one seems to care about us though. I’m prior military and I can tell you, if your pay is held all you need to do is inform the bill collectors and they will work with you without penalty…most will anyways. Now as a civilian employee with no pay? Yeah, no help for us.

  16. SSG Bobby Welch | September 28, 2013 at 12:53 am |

    "Man i hate to say it, but the GOP is a dame Joke. They never been in "The Military" and
    they just don"t give dame. How they fill when they go to Church on Sunday,and listing
    at is been said in the "Good Book" do any of that go into that dumb brain……Can you
    hear me now….Good luck in getting your 1st of the month check….but guess what
    member of Congress will be getting they checks….. Ani't that a joke

  17. Wow, some of you are so ignorant its disgusting. This has happened before… 1995 under beloved president Clinton. Lovely Bush is the reason why we are in so much debt. You think Obama came into office and all of a sudden were billions on dollars in debt?? Doesnt work that way. Its sad that we live in a country where people who can not afford healthcare can be denied the right to be healthy. Majority of you military people would damn sure not be able to afford healthcare if you were not provided so. The sooner you realize that the president is more of a figure head (that takes the blame for all of Senate) the less ignorant you’ll be.

  18. that is so backwards. Enough with blaming Bush! He is the President and he has been for two terms! We pay more taxes now then when his precious first "elect me" speeches started nearly 5 years ago! He is also the one who has openly threatened to veto a budget if his precious namesake insurance doesn't get funded. Google it, research it. The more things unfold and the more time goes by with this President the more obvious it is he has no love for the military at all. Slowly everything is getting taken away, education, programs, retirement benefits, insurance benefits. Come on! We can blame legislators but the buck stops with him as Commander and Chief.

  19. Same BS we've been through before. We all got paid before and we will all get paid again…Its just delayed while the Numb Nuts in Washington Jockey for position…

  20. I understand we are all upset about this government shutdown but we need to remember that the President only has so much power. He can not sign off on a bill until congress approves it. So all this bashing and lack of knowledge in reference to government is unnecessary. This is not just an Obama situation this happens every year around the fiscal year it’s just that now because of the recession due to the war that we were duped into that budgets are struggling. My husband and I have been in the military for 15 yrs and this is not our first rodeo. Normally they are fighting on whether or not they are going to give the military a rasie and what percentage it will be. I find it puzzling how many on this page think that the commissary as well as housing is a must that the government must provide…all of these amenities are privileges and we need to be grateful for those things.Also learning the basics of how government operates will help the President does not work alone yes he has been put into a position but he can’t do anything without congress saying ok so we all need to think about who we put inton office locally they represent your spouses fate when it comes to these time.

  21. How about if Congress and the President give up their salaries to pay the Military who protect our country? How about if the Secret Service does not get paid and shuts down! Let the first lady and the kids walk and be normal instead of the protection detail they are 'entitled' to just because they are who they are! My fellow soldiers and families deserve a paycheck for who they just are- defenders of our COUNTRY!!! WOW!!!

  22. Good, I don't like shopping where the people who work there are rude and disrespectful anyhow!

  23. I try not to take a fatalistic view of things with the government, though at times I know it's hard. But, if this does happen, we will deal with it, just like we deal with everything else in life that isn't so comfortable. If it does happen, it won't be for long, so maybe a day, maybe two tops? If for some reason it did stay closed for a protracted amount of time my concern would be for those who live in very remote areas where the next closest grocery store is 30+ miles away. While it would be a pain in the butt for me I can do it if I had to. But some of these families here at Irwin don't have cars, and that could be a challenge. As for pointing fingers and putting blame on the President, I think that is naive. It is a much broader problem that all parties have created by all sides being ridged and stubborn to a fault. We all have to flex and when something doesn't flex it breaks.

  24. Infantryman101 | September 28, 2013 at 2:03 pm |

    I’m sorry, but if you’re not in the military, or been exposed to how it works, you have no place to talk about it all.

  25. Meh. Go to Walmart than. I find better deals there than the Commisary half the time anyways. If the politicans, including the President, want to play games, than I'll just walk off the court and go somewhere else. I suggest the rest do the same.

  26. The very fact that the government can use shutting down as a scare tactic proves that the Government has grown entirely too large. Just think about that.

  27. 1976 the military went 27 days with no pay because the government could not pass a budget. Tough on the pay check to paycheck families. I was deployed, wife working back home had to borrow money from HFC at extortionist rates to pay for the rent. Back then she was moved out of housing, because I was deplyed to GITMO. So don't say it will never happend; it did and it took a long time to recover.

  28. Roberta Ellis | September 28, 2013 at 7:14 pm |

    Why not stop all of congress and the rest of thems paychecks. See how long it takes to agree on something….

  29. I think that AAFES is privatized, which if I'm right and it is, that's why they can stay open. They aren't run through the govt. You're right though… it is pretty stupid.

  30. 2011 the last time they talked about this, i was assigned in germany, i do remember that the units assigned not only were considering assigning soldiers to work at commisaries as a detail, but also a lot og service members and a few senior leaders were quite upset to say the least. So much they were considering having units notreport in for duty, and remain on stand by in case a serious event occurs. Short of telling their troops to seek other employment, with budget that is passed, these base services like commissaries, px, mcss, and mwr all fall under the same bracket of budgeting. Im currently one of three soldiers at my installation performing calibration and technical equipment support for our installation. We are cooperative working with a civilian team of vets doing the same thing, and their doors will close as us service members will have to stop working due to the what will behappening with the civilians. These civilian techs are part of our tech team and we service members will be halted on our ability to perform our mission if this shut down occurs

  31. Change in Tricare Prime Premiums
    Retirees who pay their Tricare Prime premiums through a retired pay allotment may notice a slight change in their October net pay. This is because Tricare increased its premium effective October 1t.

    Another group of retirees who pay their Tricare Prime premiums through a retired pay allotment may notice a slight change in their October net pay for a different reason. This is because effective October 1, retirees are only eligible for Tricare Prime if they live within 50 miles a base. If they do not live within 50 miles of a base, they will be enrolled in another Tricare program, and their premiums will change.

    If you fall in either of these two groups, Tricare will have contacted you and informed you of the change. If have any questions about these changes, please contact Tricare through its customer service center.
    Updated September 18, 2013

  32. Only OCONUS commissaries will stay open? What about the isolated posts in the states? The nearest grocery store for us is a 40 minute drive. My family will be fine and survive, but there are some that don't have the financial means to get through this. Most families here can't even get groceries until payday which is Monday. I really hope a decision is made quickly so our families don't get impacted by this.

  33. Does anyone know if the perishables will be discounted? If so, I might brave the crowds. I hope everything either doesn't happen or ends quickly!

  34. Interesting that how is the military going to feed the troops who eat in the mess halls. The Commissary is the provider of food to them?

  35. in the past it was said “nothing is too good for our military” why is it true now that we now to get nothing

  36. I have you know that the politicians will continue to receive their pay during these hard times. We just went through this problem, and it is a crime to make us endure this condition again. There should be more empathy towards the people empacted by the reckless behavior of our congressmen and women.

  37. How can they justify closing the commissary in Hawaii?! Blows my mind, they say it's an overseas location for one thing then not another!! The civilian grocery store prices are staggering difference to the commissaryhere, it's not like most places where Wal-Mart or Safeway and get as good or better deals. This is going to be a MAJOR financial hardship on everyone who uses the commissary here.

  38. The surplus money was left behind by Reagan. Obama care is a form of taxation. Everybody will pay and services will be dish out with the approval of Wash.D.C. The free willing I want to see my doctor right is over. You have to wait for your turn. And doctor will be appointed by the government on your behalf. Many doctors with certain specialties or doctor now practicing will take early retirement because of over work and over work of paper works and documentation and very little reimbursement. so good luck to all of us what it will bring in the future of our younger generation…Promise is always be broken

  39. GOD BLESS AMERICA!!

  40. Actor John Woods has stated that… Obama: the gift from hell that keeps on giving.”

  41. Commissaries' should stay open until Saturday or they run out of food. Most commissary patron received their pay checks on Oct 1. Why would you close and send that money to the big box stores in town

  42. Mustang's Wife | October 1, 2013 at 3:47 pm |

    Military pay may be safe for now, but reservists' drills are already being cancelled.

  43. False! There’s MANY Anericans who are and have always been unsettled if not completely against this Government controlled healthcare. Pelosi and Obama BOTH stood and dramatically pleaded READ later, SIGN now! Congress did. Now they’ve read it and heard the Anerican voices who want revisions to the law or for it to be defunded all together!
    What is TRULY the argument here? Are you going to tell me that you think it’s WRONG for the house BOTH Democrats & Republicans to ask Reid & the Senate to ENFORCE UPON THEMSELVES the same they force upon us?!?!? And the statements that Obama holds no blame, though most of us are used to hearing that is absurd. He may not be the speaker of the house, or sitting in the Senate BUT he himself STATED HE EOUKD VETO THE BILL if it did reach him. The man who claimed to be The Lord and messiah of leadership, lacks all leadership skills. They ALL have a hand in the shut down. Included the overpaid under responsible President. But SOME HAVE GOOD REASON! And some are just self righteous hypocrites!
    In the mean time while those are excited to sign up for a government controlled health system others have lost their employment do to the cost on companies. Clinics and hospitals are laying off single moms who worked their a$$es off to get an education and NOT RELY on the government to raise her children!
    What type of American are you? Are you not paying attention?
    You TRUST the government with your HEALTH after watching their display of ability with our countries budget?

  44. False! There’s MANY Anericans who are and have always been unsettled if not completely against this Government controlled healthcare. Pelosi and Obama BOTH stood and dramatically pleaded READ later, SIGN now! Congress did. Now they’ve read it and heard the Anerican voices who want revisions to the law or for it to be defunded all together!
    What is TRULY the argument here? Are you going to tell me that you think it’s WRONG for the house BOTH Democrats & Republicans to ask Reid & the Senate to ENFORCE UPON THEMSELVES the same they force upon us?!?!? And the statements that Obama holds no blame, though most of us are used to hearing that is absurd. He may not be the speaker of the house, or sitting in the Senate BUT he himself STATED HE EOUKD VETO THE BILL if it did reach him. The man who claimed to be The Lord and messiah of leadership, lacks all leadership skills. They ALL have a hand in the shut down. Included the overpaid under responsible President. But SOME HAVE GOOD REASON! And some are just self righteous hypocrites!
    In the mean time while those are excited to sign up for a government controlled health system others have lost their employment do to the cost on companies. Clinics and hospitals are laying off single moms who worked their butts off to get an education and NOT RELY on the government to raise her children!
    What type of American are you? Are you not paying attention?
    You TRUST the government with your HEALTH after watching their display of ability with our countries budget?

  45. This is extremely unfortunate! They need to get all of this sorted out very soon.

  46. May God be with us and families that are affected by this. Keep the Faith ! God bless you all :)

  47. Wow…thanks for such a timely post…not! It is 5:01 October 1st and this is the first I saw this newsletter with this bad news. Too bad for us…too late to "stock up" as advised.

  48. I thought the commissaries ran on their own money, not appropriated funds or government borrowing. Why should they shut down?

  49. After reading comments regarding the shutdown, I find it amazing how many people don't know what they are talking about. Most comments seem to blame the President or the democrats when the GOP is the party that is causing this. If you understand how gov't works, you know that Congress makes the laws not the president. If you really want to prevent this from happening again, next election vote these people out of office. Someone called Obamacare this stupid insurance plan, but if you are active mil or a dependent you already have your healthcare. What's wrong with millions of Americans being able to have affordable healthcare; Medicare works, doesn't it?

  50. Donny Brook | October 1, 2013 at 11:22 pm |

    435 congressmen/women have 16,000-paid staffers who have to be off of work during this unnecessary crisis. Senators pay their staffers approximately $2-Million a year, or about $200-Million a year total, while representatives shell out approximate $1-Million a year or about $335-Million a year. Do you think the Commissaries could have been left open at least three-days a week while the congress is saving $2.68 million a day?

  51. Sense Maker | October 2, 2013 at 12:00 am |

    There may be no food at Walmart if things keep going as they are. I suggest you have your own commissary in your home. Then you'll be sure to have the food and supplies you need.

  52. I can go to several other grocery stores and get better deals anyway. Closer to home and I get points toward better gas prices. I don't think I've been in the Commisary more than a half dozen times in the last 3 years. The parking is awful and lines are long.

  53. This is so sad n it bothers me, Obama do your best man and safe this country peaple work with him

  54. Wallace Riley | October 2, 2013 at 4:39 pm |

    This does not make financial sense. Commissaries MAKE money for the military. Their prices are supposedly cost (in some areas (especially where commissaries almost entirely support retirees and are not located on active military installations – such as Orlando – the price seems to be more than the cost of the product) plus 5%. Their profits (minus employee and other expenses), like those of the exchanges, supposedly go to MWR. I have been retired since 1981, however I thought that they also supplied storage for food for the dining halls. Exchanges and many of their services (gas, ticket sales, equipment rentals, and sometimes Clubs. etcetera) also make money for MWR. I don't recall if workers at the Commissary are military, GS or MWR. I think the head of each, on each installation, is military and the majority of the workers are MWR. If you recall, the baggers are volunteers who work for tips only.

  55. I see a lot of posts stating that they wish the president and congress/senate would not get their pay during this shutdown. Well Guess What Cowboys and Cowgirls? They have passed legislation which makes it impossible for them to not get paid during one of these shutdowns. They can't even refuse to be paid because of the clever law they have passed to protect their money/pay/benefits.

  56. sabrinacking | October 3, 2013 at 6:22 am |

    Coming back to read this is one thing: frightening. The polarization in every single argument is nutsoid. I am beginning to wonder if this is what every conversation was like in 1861.

  57. i served this nation active and reserve forces for more than 30 years EVEN IN VIETNAM. the more this nation moves away from God the more problems we are going to have. the GOP, Tea Party, Bush, Obama, and the Democrates / Liberals can not save us because they are not in control of anything. God is

  58. It would be interesting to know if the dinng hall for the politicians in Washington has closed or are we still subsidizing it?

  59. Until we the people start electing politicians with adult leadership abilities we can expect this process to repeat it's self from time to time.

  60. Emeraldseagull | October 3, 2013 at 5:32 pm |

    Congress's pay cannot be reduced. That is in the Constitution. To get more bang for the buck, reduce the number of incumbents by 75%. Then they will not be so willing to sacrifice the well being of the citizens of the USA, by shutting down the government, not passing budgets, and mandating the purchase of something.

  61. Shore will open tomorrow. It's not DeCA fault. They do the best job they can. They have been out of work! Give them a break!

  62. Stop complaining just go to Walmart end of conversation I love the commissary

  63. Albertsons is giving military families discounts for now.

Comments are closed.