Hart Health Strategies provides a comprehensive policy briefing on a weekly basis. This in-depth health policy briefing is sent out at the beginning of each week. The health policy briefing recaps the previous week and previews the week ahead. It alerts clients to upcoming congressional hearings, newly introduced bills, regulatory announcements, and implementation activity related to the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA) and other health laws.


CRomnibus or Another CR?

Reading the tea leaves from Speaker John Boehner’s (R-OH) remarks last week, it appears that his preferred means to extend fiscal year (FY) 2015 federal funding is Rep. Price’s (R-GA) suggestion, a so-called CRomnibus which would provide appropriations for the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) and all other agencies, except for the Department of Homeland Security (DHS), through September 30, 2015. House Republicans would fund DHS only for the first few months into 2015 in order to give them leverage next year to defund or scale-back the President’s executive order allowing certain illegal aliens to remain in the United States and become eligible for various benefits, such as Social Security and Medicare. Appropriators are expected to release their draft of the limited omnibus bill on Monday which would allow the House to act by Wednesday and the Senate shortly thereafter in order to avoid a government shutdown which would occur if federal spending authority is not extended by the end of this coming Thursday, December 11th. The CRomnibus approach appears to have enough support from Republican conservatives inasmuch as House Republicans were given the opportunity to vote last week to approve H.R. 5759, the Preventing Executive Overreach on Immigration Act by a vote of 219 - 197. If the content of the CRomnibus is resisted by enough House Republicans or the President and congressional Democrats object, it is likely that Congress will still meet Friday’s deadline for adjournment sine die by passing a simpler short-term continuing resolution (CR). It remains to be seen how much of the President’s request for $6.2 billion in funds to help fight Ebola will be contained in the legislation.

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