Senate Committee Releases FY2021 Government Funding Proposals

  • by AGD Washington Advocacy Representative
  • Nov 19, 2020

The Senate Appropriations Committee published working drafts of its 12 Fiscal Year (FY) 2021 spending bills on November 10. The House and Senate Appropriations Committees are now negotiating a compromise between the recently published Senate drafts and the FY2021 funding bills passed by the House in the summer. 

Appropriators will have until December 11 to come to a compromise, the date that the current short-term continuing resolution (CR) funding the government expires. If negotiations fail to produce an omnibus funding bill, another CR pushing the funding debate into 2021 will need to be passed to avert a government shutdown.

Both the House and Senate versions of the Labor, Health and Human Services, Education and Related Agencies (Labor-HHS) FY2021 appropriations bill contain language on funding for vital oral health-related programs and provisions. Some of the oral health provisions on the negotiating table include funding for General Dentistry Residency Programs, the Dental Faculty Loan Repayment Program, HRSA's oral health literacy awareness and education campaign, and language supporting HRSA's Chief Dental Officer (CDO) and concern over the continued vacancy of the CDO position at CMS.

While there has been bipartisan interest in hammering out the details of FY2021 funding before December 11, there are notable differences in the amounts of funds the House and Senate would like to see in several areas, including the Labor-HHS bill.

The text and explanatory statements (report language) for the Senate and House Labor-HHS bills are below:

- Senate FY2021 Labor-HHS (draft bill text) (report language)
- House FY2021 Labor-HHS (final bill text) (report language)

Impact on General Dentistry: AGD appreciates the consideration and inclusion of oral health policy provisions and sustained funding by the House and Senate in their FY2021 Labor-HHS bills. The AGD is working with relevant appropriations subcommittees to ensure that funding and provisions for programs that help improve the nation's oral health and the practice of general dentistry will be included in the eventual compromise funding package.