Senate Appropriations Committee Approves Funding for MCC, HIV/AIDS Programs, Global Fund
The Senate Appropriations Committee on Thursday approved the fiscal year 2007 foreign operations appropriations bill (S 600), which includes funds for a variety of foreign assistance programs, including HIV/AIDS programs, CQ Today reports (Starks, CQ Today, 6/29). The bill would appropriate a total of $31.3 billion in FY 07 funding, according to a committee release (Appropriations committee release, 6/29). The bill includes $9.7 billion for the State Department, which is less than President Bush's $10.2 billion request (CQ Today, 6/29). The bill also includes $3.4 billion to fight HIV/AIDS, including $600 million for the Global Fund To Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria. All HIV/AIDS programs would be combined into a single account, called the Child Survival and Health Programs Fund (Appropriations committee release, 6/29). The bill also would appropriate $1.9 billion to the Millennium Challenge Corporation, about one-third less than Bush requested for MCC and the largest reduction from Bush's overall request (Starks, CQ Today, 6/29). MCC was created to administer funds for the Millennium Challenge Account, a program aimed at encouraging economic and political reforms in developing countries. Twenty-three countries currently are eligible to apply for MCC funding. Bush's February budget proposal included $3 billion for MCC, which would have provided enough funding to sign agreements with eight additional countries (Kaiser Daily HIV/AIDS Report, 6/12). The bill also would provide $225 million for U.S. bilateral malaria programs, including the President's Malaria Initiative, according to a Friends of the Global Fight release (FGF release, 6/29). Committee members stressed that most foreign assistance programs would receive funding equal to what they received in FY 2006. Overall, the bill would decrease by 7% the president's overall funding request for foreign aid programs (CQ Today, 6/29). The House earlier this month voted to approve its version of the 2007 foreign operations authorization bill (HR 5522), which includes funds for a variety of foreign assistance programs, including HIV/AIDS programs (Kaiser Daily HIV/AIDS Report, 6/12).This is part of the KHN Morning Briefing, a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations. Sign up for an email subscription.