Here's the scoop on what's happening this week in Congress
The Senate Labor Health and Human Services (LHHS) Appropriations Subcommittee, which determines funding for the Division of STD Prevention at CDC, was expected to markup their FY20 appropriations bills on Tuesday, September 10. The markup was canceled by Senate Appropriations Chairman Richard Shelby (AL) after learning that LHHS subcommittee Ranking Member Patty Murray (WA) planned to introduce an amendment barring implementation of the recent Title X rule.
The amendment, considered a “poison pill”, would likely ruin the bill’s chance of passing. Legislators agreed by handshake when finalizing the budget that no “poison pill” amendments would be introduced and are now hashing out what would constitute such an amendment. Consequently, the LHHS bill was not included in the full Appropriations Committee markup on Thursday, September 12.
While the LHHS bill was not marked-up during the full Appropriations Committee meeting, the Committee received the topline number so that the subcommittee can now allocate program funding up-to this number. The Senate LHHS FY20 allocation is $178.3 billion, an increase of $200 million from the FY19 mark. It is yet to be seen whether the Appropriations Committee will come to an agreement and markup the bill before the end of FY19 on September 30.
In preparation for the beginning of FY20 on October 1, the House drafted a continuing resolution (CR) bill, that would allow the government to stay open and operate at FY19 funding levels. You can read the draft CR here.