The Statue of Liberty and Ellis Island are now open for visitors, with New York state picking up the tab for the federal workers during the 69-hour shutdown.
The two sites reopened on Monday after being closed due to the shutdown which ended late Monday when President Donald Trump signed a bill reopening the federal government.
Gov. Andrew Cuomo announced their reopening on Sunday, saying the sites are vital to the state's tourism industry. The state will spend about $65,000 per day for the federal employees who operate the sites.
The Statue of Liberty National Monument & Ellis Island Will Reopen - The National Park Service, through a funding agreement with the State of New York, will reopen the Statue of Liberty National Monument and Ellis Island on Monday morning, January 22. 4tix https://t.co/O5XqQvKTSt pic.twitter.com/FfI2KVKsle— Statue of Liberty NM (@StatueEllisNPS) January 21, 2018
The Democratic governor had said the state would pay for the duration of the shutdown.
During the last shutdown in 2013, a number of governors used state funds to keep parks open, including the Statue of Liberty, which at the time cost $61,600 per day to reopen.
At a news conference at the Statue of Liberty, Cuomo said the site generates tourism revenue, adding that the monument serves as a welcoming beacon to immigrants arriving in the United States.
“We don’t want to lose the income,” he said. “And symbolically, you can shut down the government, but you can’t shut down the Statue of Liberty.”