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AIDS Action Weekly Update

November 15, 1996

Welcome to AIDS Action Council's Weekly Washington Update, an on-line newsletter that reviews what is happening in Washington on AIDS policy issues each week. If you have any comments or questions, please feel free to contact us at the e-mail address listed below.

Balanced Budget Becomes Part Of Bipartisan Message For Second Term

The balanced budget, a major issue during the campaign, has now become a conciliatory tool for President Clinton to reach out to the GOP. President Clinton announced earlier this week that balancing the budget is his main priority for his second term, a goal he believes is "easily achievable." He remains opposed, however, to a constitutional amendment to balance the budget which Treasury Secretary Robert Rubin stated, "...isn't going to cut the deficit by one nickel. What it [a balanced budget amendment] does is create a constitutional inflexibility that can be very dangerous." As one of his strategies to balance the budget, President Clinton has announced that he wants a bipartisan commission to look into controlling the costs of Medicare.

As a further demonstration of his commitment to bipartisanship, President Clinton has announced that he would consider appointing Republicans to some of the open key Administration positions. Retired General Colin Powell and former Senator William Cohen (R-ME) have been mentioned as possible candidates for the Secretary of Defense slot as well as the Secretary of State position.

Dornan Defeated; Wants House Oversight Investigation

Robert Dornan, the outspoken anti-gay, anti-federal AIDS funding representative from the 46th district of California, lost to the relatively unknown Democrat Loretta Sanchez. Sanchez, who was behind last week by 233 votes, moved ahead of Dornan by 929 votes as absentee ballots were counted earlier this week. Dornan, who is well known for his rambling attack speeches on the House floor against the gay community, people with AIDS, President Clinton, and fellow members of Congress, stated that he suspects that large numbers of non-citizens voted and has demanded an investigation of the election from the House Oversight Committee. This seems to be an appropriate ending for a campaign riddled with personal attacks. As one example, during the campaign Representative Dornan frequently lambasted Representative-elect Sanchez for her participation in a fundraiser hosted in her honor by the domestic partners of openly gay retired Representatives Steve Gunderson (R-WI) and Gerry Studds (D-MA), and current Representative Barney Frank.

Patsy Fleming, Jeff Levi Step Down From Office Of National Aids Policy The Office of National AIDS Policy (ONAP), established by the Clinton Administration during its first term has announced the departures of Director Patricia Fleming and Deputy Director Jeff Levi. Levi will vacate his position November 30, while Fleming will stay on until a new Director is in place. The Office of National AIDS Policy has worked to address the emerging challenges in the epidemic. ONAP counts among its accomplishments the following: "substantial increases in funding for AIDS research, prevention, care, and housing; an historic White House Conference on HIV and AIDS; a first-ever report to the President on the impact of HIV on youth; creation of the Forum for Collaborative HIV Research; and a much greater focus on the needs of women, gay youth, and communities of color."

Pedro Zamora Remembered On Anniversary Of His Death

Pedro Zamora, AIDS activist and former cast member of MTV's "The Real World," was remembered on the second anniversary of his death, November 11. Zamora, who was 22 at the time of his death, was a vocal AIDS advocate who encouraged young people to actively involve themselves in the fight against AIDS. Unfortunately, Zamora's insistence that federal AIDS prevention and care programs consider the needs of America's youth remains an unfulfilled priority as another generation falls prey to this epidemic when one quarter of all new HIV infections in this country occur in people between the ages of 13 and 20.

To help perpetuate the vision and leadership of Zamora, AIDS Action has established the Pedro Zamora Public Policy Fellowship which provides an opportunity for young adults ages 18 to 28 to learn about and participate in the development of federal HIV/AIDS policy. The deadline for fellowships during the first half of 1997 is December 15. Application forms are available for AIDS Action Council.

HRSA Accepting Applications For SPNS

The Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA) has announced that applications for FY 97 grants for the Special Projects of National Significance (SPNS) program, part of Title V of the Ryan White CARE Act, are being accepted. The announcement solicits applications addressing the development and assessment of innovative service delivery models that are designed to ensure the ongoing availability of services for Native American communities, enabling them to care for Native Americans with HIV disease. Between one and four grants will be awarded, with $1,000,000 as the total amount available. For more information on the application process, please write to the SPNS Branch, Office of Science and Epidemiology, Bureau of Health Resources Development, Health Resources and Services Administration, 5600 Fishers Lane, Room 7A-08, Rockville, MD 20857, or call 301-443-9976.

For more information contact:
Lisa White
AIDS Action Council
1875 Connecticut Ave., NW Suite 700
Washington, DC 20009

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This article was provided by AIDS Action Council. It is a part of the publication AIDS Action Weekly Update.