WASHINGTON (WJLA) - At the Washington Harbour in Georgetown, water taxis from Alexandria and the National Harbor can slow to a crawl and allow people to look – but they cannot completely stop.
The National Park Service has shut down the dock and a boarding site near the MLK Memorial. One regular taxi rider calls the federal concern, “artificial.”
"I never see any federal presence," says Virginia resident Jeff Fogel. "I think the administration is trying to make this as painful as possible, and they're afraid otherwise we won't miss the federal government."
The Alexandria-based Potomac Riverboat Company that operates the service says the loss of Georgetown as a port has required it to lay off eight employees.
"You estimate you're losing $5,000 a day in revenue," explains VP of the Company, Charlotte Hall. "It's very frustrating and you feel very helpless -- not only because your business is losing money, but you're losing visitors to Alexandria. "
In addition to the frustrated customers who claim they are disappointed in their government, other victims of the shutdown include high school and college crew teams that operate out of D.C.'s Thompson Boat Center – also owned by the federal government.
Some of them have moved to Alexandria and Anacostia, where the crews there have been kind enough to lend space to those teams that need it.