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Advocacy at a Glance

June 16, 2017

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.

  • Senate Ag/FDA Appropriations Subcommittee to Hold Hearing on June 20. The FY 18 FDA hearing will start at 10:30 a.m. in 192 DSOB. The sole witness will be Commissioner Gottlieb. More details are here. The House has already held its hearing.
  • Dramatic Changes in Federal Spending May Not Happen this Year. As mentioned in last week’s Analysis and Commentary, delay in passing the FY 18 Congressional budget resolution has the effect of slowing the appropriations process. Essentially, without an aggregate government-wide total spending level for discretionary programs, appropriations subcommittees will not know how much they can spend. As reported this week in Politico, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell took the remarkable step of telling appropriators to temporarily use FY 17 funding levels as they start to craft their appropriations bills. He noted that those levels can be adjusted later when the budget resolution is adopted. This week’s Analysis and Commentary explores the implications of this directive for FDA, including the possibility that the agency could wind up with something close to its FY 17 appropriation.
  • What FDA Deputy Commissioner Ostroff Said About Food. The International Dairy Foods Association met this week and FDA Deputy Commissioner for Foods and Veterinary Medicines, Stephen Ostroff, presented updates on a number of food topics. He indicated that FDA would be conducting about 300 “largely educational” inspections this year to help companies and facilities to understand the compliance requirements of the FSMA preventive controls regulation. He also heralded the re-alignment within FDA so that inspectors are assigned by specialty rather than by geography. Finally, in a reminder of how much FDA-regulated foods contribute to exports, he described new trade agreements with China.

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