Update On FY '96 Funding For AIDS Programs, Ultimate Decisions On Ryan White, HOPWA Still In Limbo
January 10, 1996
Urgent: Meet with Your Members During Recess
Over the weekend, President Clinton submitted a seven-year balanced budget using Congressional Budget Office (CBO) numbers, thereby triggering the provisions of yet another "continuing resolution" (CR) passed by the House and Senate on Friday.
While all federal AIDS programs are now funded under some Continuing Resolution (see 1/7/96 Alert), the fate of FY '96 funding beyond January 26th for Ryan White, HOPWA and other homeless assistance programs, and the AIDS Education & Training Centers, still hangs in the balance. If Congress does not return until Jan. 23rd, that leaves only 3 days to take action before funding for these programs is frozen once again.
The picture looks even grimmer for FY '97 funding and beyond. All of the balanced budget proposals on the table, including President Clinton's, call for deep cuts in domestic discretionary spending over the next seven years. Yesterday, the President said his latest budget proposes such deep cuts in domestic discretionary spending that across-the-board cuts would be required in all programs, including his "investment" programs. The President said "steep cuts" would be needed in programs in order to preserve funding for his "priority" programs -- namely education and the environment.
As long as the Administration and Congress continue to seek a balanced budget agreement that cuts taxes and holds defense spending harmless, the chances of maintaining even flat-funding for domestic discretionary programs, including critical AIDS programs at HRSA, HUD, NIH and CDC, grow dimmer and dimmer. Budget negotiators still appear to be stalemated on Medicaid. Overall funding levels for Medicaid are not the only issue: while the Republican leadership has reduced significantly the overall amount of their proposed cuts in Medicaid funding, they continue to insist on block granting the program.
Stay Tuned For Further Details
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This article was provided by AIDS Action Council.