$180 Million in Emergency Funds for International AIDS Crisis Added to Senate Omnibus Spending Bill
The Senate yesterday approved an amendment to the $390 billion fiscal year 2003 omnibus appropriations package that would provide $180 million in emergency funds for the international fight against HIV/AIDS, CongressDaily/AM reports. The amendment, which was approved by voice vote last night, was proposed by Sen. Richard Durbin (D-Ill.). Several other proposed additions, including a provision of $600 million in famine aid for Africa, were defeated yesterday on the floor. Senate leaders expect to hold a final vote on the bill today. Appropriations Committee Chair Sen. Ted Stevens (R-Alaska) yesterday said that it is "highly unlikely" appropriators will finish the bill by President Bush's State of the Union address on Jan. 28 because of the "virtual certainty" of a House conference on the bill. "It's going to take some time," Stevens said, adding that he expected final action on the bill by the first week of February (Ghent, CongressDaily/AM, 1/23).This is part of the KHN Morning Briefing, a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations. Sign up for an email subscription.