Here's the scoop on what's happening this week in Congress
On Wednesday morning, September 18, the Senate released a draft of their Fiscal Year (FY)2020 Labor, Health and Human Services (LHHS) appropriations bill. The bill funds LHHS programs at $178.3 billion, a 1 percent increase over FY19 funding levels. The bill’s report language can be found here, and an additional summary can be found here. An updated funding chart for CDC and other important public health programs can be found here.
In May of this year, the House gave STD prevention a $10 million increase for FY20. Unfortunately, the Senate Appropriations Committee did not mirror this increase, and level funded STD prevention. Differences between the House and Senate bills funding levels will be resolved in conference, the process where the Senate and House come to an agreement on their different FY20 appropriations numbers. It is unlikely negotiations will be completed by the end of the fiscal year (Sept. 30), therefore a continuing resolution (CR) will be put in place to keep the government open until all appropriations bills are completed.
While the draft bill fell short in providing a much needed funding increase for STD Prevention, it did contain the below Report Language, detailing how the appropriated money should be spent:
On the evening of Thursday, September 19, the House passed a CR in order to avoid a government shutdown while the FY20 appropriations process is finalized. The resolution would keep programs funded at FY19 levels, and states there would be no new program starts if they were not funded in the prior year. The CR would begin at the start of the new fiscal year (Oct. 1) through November 21. A quick Senate passage for the CR is expected next week.