POLICY BRIEFINGS


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.


THIS WEEK'S BRIEFING - SEPTEMBER 9, 2019


Lawmakers Consider CR, Appropriations Bills as End of FY Approaches


Congress must pass spending legislation to avoid a government shutdown by October 1, leaving lawmakers with just 16 working days to pass updated funding for fiscal year (FY) 2020 or agree upon a continuing resolution (CR). While the House has passed 10 of its annual spending bills, the Senate has not passed or even introduced any appropriations legislation due to the lengthy negotiations that preceded the two-year budget deal agreement struck in July. The Senate Appropriations Subcommittee on Labor-Health and Human Services-Education is scheduled to meet on September 10 to mark up its FY 2020 spending bill, which has not yet been released. The full Appropriations panel will begin voting on bills on September 12. The Committee will also vote on top-line spending numbers for the 12 individual spending bills this week.

In a Dear Colleague letter to House Democrats, House Majority Leader Steny Hoyer (D-Md.) outlined a plan to bring a clean CR up for a vote in the House the week of September 16. The bill is expected to fund the government through late November or early December. While lawmakers have generally acknowledged that some stopgap spending measure will be necessary, Senate appropriators are hopeful that they will be able to send at least one significant spending package to the President for his signature, limiting the portion of the federal government that will need to be funded by a CR. Appropriations Chairman Richard Shelby (R-Ala.) has proposed combining spending for defense; labor, health and human services, and education; and energy and water.

The Office of Management and Budget (OMB) sent lawmakers the White House’s list of requested anomalies – changes to current spending levels – should Congress decide to use a stopgap spending measure to avoid a shutdown given the September 30 deadline for funding the federal government. No additional funds were requested for health care-related issues. The House and Senate return to Washington from August recess today.



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