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Senate Appropriations Committee Report Language

This week, the Senate Appropriations Committee released reports for the FY2009 State, Foreign Operations, and Related Programs; and Agriculture, Rural Development, Food and Drug Administration, and Related Agencies spending bills, which they passed last week (see The Source, 7/18/08). The House Appropriations Subcommittee on State, Foreign Operations, and Related Programs approved its version of the bill on July 16 (seeThe Source, 7/18/08); the House Agriculture, Rural Development, Food and Drug Administration, and Related Agencies Subcommittee approved its bill on June 19 (see The Source, 6/20/08).

The committee report accompanying the bill includes language detailing a number of programs affecting women and their families. Although report language is not binding, federal agencies give careful consideration to such language as it indicates programs or initiatives that are particularly important to appropriators.

State, Foreign Operations, and Related Programs

According to the report, the committee would provide $36.62 billion in discretionary funds and $157.1 million in mandatory funds in FY2009 for programs within the bill (S. 3288). The total $36.777 billion is $3.819 billion over FY2008 and $1.599 billion less than the president’s request.

The total includes $12.225 billion for the State Department, $895.559 million for the United States Agency for International Development, $16.846 billion for bilateral economic assistance, which includes funding for programs at USAID and the State Department, and $2.131 billion for multilateral assistance.

The chart below details funding for various programs important to women. The amounts provided do not include appropriations enacted through the FY2008 Supplemental Appropriations Act (P.L. 110-252).

 

Agency/Program

FY2008

President’s Request

FY2009 Subcommittee Mark

State Department (p. 8) $11.491 billion* $12.223 billion $12.225 billion
Office to Monitor and Combat Trafficking in Persons (p. 9) $1.287 million $1.306 million $1.956 million
International Peacekeeping (p. 23) $1.691 billion* $1.497 billion $1.65 billion
Migration and refugee assistance (p. 57) $1.023 billion* $764 million $1.1 billion
United States Agency for International Development (USAID) (p. 32) $769.435 million* $978.784 million $895.559 million
Trafficking in Persons (p. 47) $11.903 million $7.183 million $12 million
Global Health and Child Survivial (p. 34) $6.491 billion* $6.357 billion $6.74 billion
Child Survivial and Maternal Health (p. 35) $446.504 million $369.5 million $500 million
Vulnerable Children (p. 35, 38) $14.879 million $10 million $15 million
Family Planning/Reproductive Health (p. 35, 36) $391.8 million $301.7 million $435 million
HIV/AIDS — USAID (p. 35, 36) $347.165 million $342.03 million $350 million

Microbicides (p. 35, 37)

$44.636 million $35 million $45 million
HIV/AIDS — State Dept. (PEPFAR) (p. 35, 36) $4.662 billion $4.779 billion $4.779 billion

Global Fund to Fight AIDS, TB, and Malaria (p. 35)

$454.545 million $200 million $600 million

UNAIDS (p. 35)

$34.717 million $35 million $40 million
Millennium Challenge Corporation (p. 59) $1.544 billion $2.225 billion $254 million
International Organizations and Programs
U.N. Children’s Fund (UNICEF) (p. 65) $127.955 million $124.5 million $129 million
U.N. Development Fund for Women (UNIFEM) (p. 65) $3.571 million $950,000 $5 million
UNIFEM Trust Fund (p. 65) $1.785 million $0 $3 million
U.N. Population Fund (UNFPA) (p. 65) $6.943 million $0 $45 million

 

*Includes funding from the emergency spending within the FY2008 omnibus appropriations spending bill (P.L. 110-161).

In addition to the programs detailed above, the committee directs USAID to make public the amount and uses of funding, by country, to reduce maternal mortality within its child survival and maternal health account (p. 36), and notes “the stresses on woefully inadequate social services in many developing countries caused by high rates of population growth, which contribute to competition for limited resources, environmental degradation, malnutrition, poverty and conflict.” It further states that “Assisting countries in reducing rates of population growth to sustainable levels should be a priority of USAID” (p. 36). The committee also indicates its continued support for programs that focus on preventing mother-to-child transmission of AIDS (p. 37).

The committee recommends an additional $100 million “to address the critical needs of Afghan women and girls, including support for women-led Afghan NGOs [nongovernmental organizations]” and expresses its concern about reports that Afghan women’s organizations lack access to USAID resources, saying, “The committee directs USAID to more aggressively conduct outreach to such organizations, particularly those in remote areas, to inform them of USAID programs and procedures. USAID should make building the capacity of women’s organizations a priority” (p. 39).

The committee urges “continued funding for programs that increase access to education for children in sub-Saharan Africa through the reduction or elimination of school fees, and which increase access to primary education for girls, including in Ethiopia” (p. 41).

The committee also recommends “not less than $250 million from all accounts in this act for microfinance and microenterprise development programs for the poor, especially women” and directs that “50 percent of funds be for grants to private networks, practitioner institutions, and NGOs, and $30 million should be provided to USAID’s Office of Microenterprise through a central funding mechanism for contracts, cooperative agreements, and grants. The committee recommends $20 million for microfinance service providers working with people infected by HIV/AIDS” (p. 42).

The committee continues its support for programs that provide economic opportunities for poor, very poor, and low-income women (p. 44) and recommends that USAID consider funding a proposal to increase leadership training for women in developing countries (p. 45). The committee also recommends that USAID expand funding for a Russian program that includes the Moms and Babies program (p. 53).

In expressing its concern about the incidents of international child pornography, the committee suggests that the State Department consider a proposal to “share information, track incidents, and identify patterns of international child pornography” (p. 55).

The committee explains its decision to fund the Millennium Challenge Corporation $1.29 billion below FY2008 and $1.971 billion below the president’s request. Although the committee “strongly supports the MCC’s goals,” it “recommends allocating these funds to support programs that were underfunded in the budget request to address immediate and pressing humanitarian, development, and security needs, as follows: Global Health and Child Survival, including HIV/AIDS, $733 million above the request…Migration and Refugee Assistance, $336 million above the request…[and] Contributions for International Peacekeeping Activities, $153 million above the request…” (p. 59).

Agriculture, Rural Development, Food and Drug Administration, and Related Agencies

According to the committee report, the Agriculture, Rural Development, Food and Drug Administration, and Related Agencies spending bill contains $97.204 billion for FY2009, $6.552 billion over FY2008 and $1.66 billion over the administration’s request. The bill includes $65.012 billion for domestic food programs, $2.051 billion for the Food and Drug Administration, and $1.503 billion for foreign assistance programs.

 

Agency/Program

FY2008

President’s Request

FY2009 Subcommittee Mark

Food Nutrition Service (p. 90) $60.056 billion $64.125 billion $65.011 billion
Child Nutrition programs (p. 91-93) $13.902 billion $45.456 billion $14.456 billion
Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants, and Children (WIC) (p. 93-95) $6.02 billion $6.1 billion $6.75 billion
Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (formerly the Food Stamp program) (p. 95) $39.783 billion $43.349 billion $43.437 billion
Commodity Assistance Program (p. 96) $210.288 million $70.37 million $255.37 million
Foreign Food Assistance
P.L. 480 Food for Peace (p. 102) $1.211 billion $1.226 billion $1.226 billion
McGovern-Dole International Food for Education and Child Nutrition program (p. 103) $99.3 million $100 million $100 million
Food and Drug Administration (FDA) (p. 107) $1.717 billion $2.046 billion $2.051 billion
Mammography Quality Standards Act (P.L. 108-365) fees (p. 107) $18.398 million $19.318 million $19.318 million

 

The Commodity Assistance Program provides funding for the Commodity Supplemental Food Program (CSFP). The report notes that CSFP “provides supplemental food to infants and children up to age six, and to pregnant, postpartum, and breastfeeding women who have low incomes, and reside in approved project areas” (p. 96).

The committee “recommends no less than the fiscal year 2008 level in appropriated funds for activities related to the Mammography Quality Standards Act [MQSA],” and directs the FDA to report back to the committee within 120 days of enactment on which amendments, if any, it will propose to the MQSA in response to the recommendations of the Institute of Medicine report, “Breast Imaging Quality Standards” (p. 111).

Included in the amount the committee provided for the FDA is $5 million for the Public Health Service Office of Women’s Health (OWH). The committee “encourages” the FDA to ensure that the OWH is “sufficiently funded to carry out its activities and to enhance its funding, if necessary” (p. 111).

The committee also urges the FDA to “prioritize review of new treatments and clinical trials” for pediatric cancer patients (p. 111-112).

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