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Advocacy at a Glance

May 24, 2013

Advocacy at a Glance offers you the bullet point summary of current advocacy issues associated with the goals of the Alliance for a Stronger FDA.

  • Lawmakers Explore Sequester Flexibility Plans.  As reported in Roll Call this week, several lawmakers are exploring proposals that would give agencies more flexibility in handling cuts under sequestration before both chambers complete fiscal 2014 spending bills. However, some lawmakers are resisting the idea of providing agencies leeway to deal with the cuts, including Senate Appropriations Chairman Barbara Mikulski (D-MD). Senator Mikulski called instead for an agreement to eliminate or replace the cuts.“I think the ultimate flexibility is to cancel sequester. So I’m looking for a bargain this year so that we can cancel sequester,” Mikulski said.
  • Sequestered FDA User Fees Offset Legislation Planned. Congressman Sam Farr (D-CA), the ranking member of the House FDA Appropriations Subcommittee, has indicated that he plans to introduce legislation which would allow FDA to access $83 million user fees that are being paid by industry this fiscal year but the agency is unable to touch because they are subject to sequestration.. Industry and FDA have been meeting with lawmakers and officials at the White House Office of Management and Budget to discuss how the agency can gain access to the portion of the fees that are being held at the Treasury.
  • ABC/Washington Post Poll: Sequester Damage Increasing. The number of Americans who say sequestration has harmed them is rising, according to a new poll. In March, right after the $85 billion in across-the-board budget cuts went into effect, only 25 percent of Americans said sequestration had affected them.   However, an ABC/Washington Post poll released Friday found that number had jumped to 37 percent, with half of them saying the impact was “major.”
  • Gallup Poll: FDA’s Rating by Public Improves the Most Among Federal Agencies Between 2009-2013.  A recent update of a Gallup trend on Americans’ ratings of nine major federal government agencies shows that FDA’s rating by the public has increased the most between 2009 and 2013.  Please click here to view the poll.

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