Here's your quick look at five stories to know about today:
1. Federal government shuts down: Leaders in Washington failed to reach a plan to fund federal agencies Monday, and the federal government shut down at 12:01 a.m. today. Locally, the closure of National Park Service sites such as the Liberty Bell, Independence Hall and Valley Forge will be one of the most visible early effects of the shutdown. Here's a deeper look at what changes -- and what doesn't -- during the shutdown. One thing that officials don't expect to be affected: Federally funded efforts for the Jersey Shore to recover from Superstorm Sandy and last month's boardwalk fire. For their part, area lawmakers stuck to party lines in their votes preceding the impasse.
3. School breakfast: A report being released today says more needy children are getting breakfast at school. The Advocates for Children of New Jersey report says the state still lags behind others in serving the meal to low-income students, but the number of eligible students who received breakfast rose 35 percent between 2010 and 2013.