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Advocacy at a Glance

June 26, 2015

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.

  • Ag/FDA Appropriations Mark-ups Delayed. The full House Appropriations Committee was slated to mark-up the subcommittee-adopted Ag/FDA bill on June 25. However, the mark-up was postponed, presumably to be scheduled in July. The Senate has not yet scheduled their subcommittee mark-up on the Ag/FDA appropriations bill, but this is expected to occur in July. Meantime, both House and Senate have been active in moving other appropriations bills forward. Six of 12 appropriations bills have passed the House and four more have been voted out of committee. Ag/FDA should be next. Only homeland security has not yet had a subcommittee  mark-up in the House, although it is moving in the Senate. On the Senate side, seven of the 12 bills have been reported from the full committee and one more has passed subcommittee. Ag/FDA is one of four subcommittees that has not yet marked up their bills. The House will be attempting to pass all of the remaining appropriations bills during July. In contrast, timing in the Senate is uncertain because Democrats are trying to force negotiations on overall spending and budget caps before they complete all of the appropriations bills.
  • House Report on Ag/FDA Appropriations Available. Despite the postponement of the full committee mark-up, the committee released a “draft” of the report language that accompanies the legislation. The FDA section is longer than in previous years, reflecting a wide variety of topics on which the committee wishes to direct FDA activities. For our purposes, the top line is that FDA will receive $41.5 million more for its work on the Food Safety Modernization Act (FSMA) and $4.2 million more for its work on medical product safety. The FSMA monies go to CFSAN (+$35 million), CVM (+$5.5 million), and Office of the Commissioner (+$ 1million). Overall, the agency would receive $30 million additional, bringing total BA funding to $2.618 billion. To reconcile the higher FSMA and medical product safety numbers, the committee has accepted $15 million in administrative savings proposed by FDA. To see how each FDA Center and line item fares under the House bill, please read this week’s Analysis and Commentary.
  • Congressional Recess Is Here; Latest on H.R. 6. Congress is on recess from June 29 to July 7. When they return, the House will be in DC until July 30 and the Senate will be in DC until August 10; at least that’s what the official calendars say. Sometime soon after the House returns, maybe as early as July 8, Chairman Upton is expecting to gain a floor vote on his 21st Century Cures legislation (H.R. 6).
  • No Friday Update on July 3. We wish everyone a fun Fourth of July. The next Advocacy at a Glance and Analysis and Commentary will be distributed on July 10.

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