At 12:25 am this morning, President Obama signed legislation ending the 2013 federal fiscal standoff and opening the government after a 16-day shutdown. Minutes later, the Office of Personnel Management sent out an email notifying federal employees that they "are expected to return for work on their next regularly scheduled work day."
In a message to the extramural community during the shutdown, Sally Rockey, NIH Deputy Director for Extramural Research, asked for patience once the government reopened. "Once the shutdown is over, NIH will need time to set new dates for grant and contract submissions, review meetings, conferences, and other activities that were scheduled to happen during and immediately following the period of the shutdown. It will take us a few days after this is over to communicate our plans, so please bear with us."
The NIH has also indicated that it is going to need an increased level of participation from the NIH community, especially in study sections. In his October 9 Activation Energy blog ASCB Executive Director Stefano Bertuzzi encouraged ASCB members to be ready and willing to help when asked. "The best service to the community that ASCB members could provide on this front is to make an extra effort to say yes when asked to serve on a study section. There will be an enormous need to move the review process and grant funding forward as quickly as possible. ASCB members need to pitch in as never before."