Hart Health Strategies provides a comprehensive policy briefing on a weekly basis. This in-depth health policy briefing is sent out at the beginning of each week. The health policy briefing recaps the previous week and previews the week ahead. It alerts clients to upcoming congressional hearings, newly introduced bills, regulatory announcements, and implementation activity related to the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA) and other health laws.


Congress Moves Forward on Short Term CR

Following a meeting between Vice President-Elect Mike Pence and House Republicans last week to discuss the lame duck agenda, the GOP decided that they will pursue a measure that would fund the federal government through March 31, 2017, instead of negotiating a fiscal year (FY) 2017 omnibus spending bill. Lawmakers will begin work on the continuing resolution (CR) the week after Thanksgiving. Appropriations leaders in the House had been waiting for President-Elect Donald Trump to indicate whether a bipartisan spending deal should be passed before the end of the year, or whether lawmakers should instead pass another CR that would expire in the first half of 2017. The current CR funds the government through December 9. Conservative Republicans were most supportive of the stopgap-spending bill in order to allow budget decisions to be made when Republicans control both the White House and Congress. But Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.), as well as leadership on the Appropriations committees, appeared to be more supportive of finishing FY 2017 spending decisions this year in order to allow the new administration to start with a clean slate. Democratic appropriators have expressed opposition to a CR, put it is still unclear whether they will vote against the stopgap spending
measure. Several Senate Republicans have also expressed opposition to the plan. Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.), chairman of the Senate Appropriations State-Foreign Operations Subcommittee, has said that he would vote against a CR. According to House Appropriations Committee Chairman Hal Rogers (R-Ky.) and Labor, HHS, and Education Subcommittee Chairman Tom Cole (R-Ok.), there will be many anomalies and additions to address in the CR.

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