Policy Riders And Spending Debate Fueling Govt. Shutdown Fears

Facing a 12:01 a.m. Saturday deadline, congressional leaders and President Barack Obama are seeking to bridge partisan differences and reach an agreement on a final 2011 spending bill. The differences between Democrats and Republicans persist on more than just the size of spending cuts. Also at issue are controversial policy riders favored by the Republicans.

As examples of what issues may now be in play, here is a list of some health-related policy measures that were included in H.R. 1, the 2011 budget bill passed by the House on Feb. 19.

Sec. 1536. Prevents funding provided for the Executive Office of the President to be used for the director of the Office of Health Care Reform, or any substantially similar position.

Sec. 1590. Expands restrictions placed on federal funds for the District of Columbia regarding abortions to include non-federal funding sources as well, meaning that the District could only pay for abortions in circumstances of rape or incest, or to save the life of a pregnant woman.

Sec. 1591. Prohibits funding for needle-exchange funding – “none of the funds contained in this division may be used for any program of distributing sterile needles or syringes for the hypodermic injection of any illegal drug.”

Sec. 1809. Prohibits funding under Title X of the Public Health Service Act to provide for voluntary family planning projects.

Sec. 1820. Prohibits funding for certain parts of the Public Health Service Act related to chronic disease self-management activity grants.

Sec. 4013. Excludes federal funding of Planned Parenthood Federation of America, Inc. and a list of 102 affiliates.

Sec. 4016. Prohibits funding to any employee, officer, contractor, or grantee of any department or agency to implement the provisions of the health law.

Sec. 4017. Prevents funds from being used to carry out the provisions of the health law.

Sec. 4018. Excludes funding of the salary of any federal employee to carry out the provisions of the health law.

Sec. 4019. Prohibits funding of Internal Revenue Service efforts to implement the health law’s individual mandate or to enforce its reporting requirements and penalties.

Sec. 4027. Prevents funds from being used to implement or enforce the health law’s various consumer protection provisions for insurance coverage or the measure’s medical loss ratio requirements, among other things.

Sec. 4034. Prevents funds from paying the salary of any officer or employee of the Department of Health and Human Services who develops or promulgates regulations or guidance with regard to the health law’s insurance exchanges.

Sec. 4047. Excludes funding of the salary of any officer or employee of the HHS Center for Consumer Information and Insurance Oversight.

Sec. 4049. Prohibits funding the salary of any officer or employee of HHS, the Department of Labor, or the Department of the Treasury who takes any action to specify or define, through regulations, guidelines, or otherwise, the health law’s “essential benefits” package.

Sec. 4050. Bars funding for the Independent Payment Advisory Board.

Related Topics

The Health Law