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While some federal contractors continued to work during the shutdown, some were paid and some were not. Though some were classified as essential, the vast majority were not. The difference in payment centered on the terms of their contract with the agency and the contracting officer.

https://www.washingtonpost.com/politics/backlogs-deadlines-and-a-massive-bureaucratic-reboot-await-federal-workers-after-shutdowns-end/2019/01/26/ed67e020-2189-11e9-8e21-59a09ff1e2a1_story.html?utm_term=.749ac05bce93&noredirect=on