U.S. Senate Appropriations Committee Releases Fiscal Year 2021 Funding Recommendations and Praises Population Research

By PAA Web posted 11-11-2020 10:49



President’s Request

House Recommendation

Senate Recommendation

PAA Recommendation

National Institutes of Health

$38 billion

$46.9 billion

$43.6 billion

$44.7 billion

National Center for Health Statistics

$155 million

$174.4 million

$176.4 million

$189 million

Bureau of Labor Statistics

$658 million

$655 million

$641 million

$658 million

Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality


$343 million

$256.6 million

$471 million

Institute of Education Sciences

$565 million

$630.4 million

$635.5 million

$670 million

National Science Foundation

$7.74 billion

$8.55 billion

$8.48 billion

$9 billion

Census Bureau

$1.67 billion

$1.68 billion

$1.79 billion

$1.68 billion

USAID Family Planning/Reproductive Health Account

$251 million

$750 million

$461 million

$575 million  

On November 10, the Senate Appropriations Committee released all 12 of its Fiscal Year (FY) 2021 appropriations bills. Normally, the Senate Appropriations Committee would have debated its bills in the spring and, ideally, sent their bills to the full Senate for consideration prior to October 1—the first day of the new fiscal year. However, because of an impasse regarding the terms of debate, the Committee failed to take up and pass any of these bills--the first time since at least 1945 that no appropriations bills were marked up in the U.S. Senate!

banknoteCurrently, a continuing resolution is funding the federal government through December 11. Now that the general election is over and Congress is convening this month for a post-election, “lame duck” session, leaders in the House and Senate are eager to negotiate a final FY 2021 omnibus funding measure incorporating all 12 FY 2021 appropriations bills. To that end, the Senate Appropriations Committee released its proposed recommendations to facilitate negotiations with the U.S. House of Representatives, which considered and passed 10 of its 12 FY 2021 appropriations bills earlier this year. Currently, negotiations between members of the House and Senate Appropriations Committee are underway. It is not clear if the deliberations will yield a final FY 2021 omnibus funding bill or if negotiations will stall, requiring another short or long-term continuing resolution. The PAA Office of Government Affairs will keep members updated.

It is important to note that in reports accompanying the Senate appropriations bills, the Senate Appropriations Committee included language praising population research programs funded by the National Institute on Aging (NIA) and National Institute of Child Health and Human Development (NICHD) at the National Institutes of Health (NIH). This language is important because it informs federal agencies about congressional funding and policy priorities.  

National Institute on Aging

Population Research—The Committee recognizes the NIA National Advisory Council on Aging (NACA) for conducting a recent review of the Institute’s Division of Behavioral and Social Research. The review reinforced the value of the Institute’s investment in an array of population aging research activities, including large-scale, longitudinal studies, such as the Health and Retirement Study, which is the Nation’s leading source of combined data on health and socioeconomic circumstances of Americans over age 50, and its center programs, such as the Centers on the Demography and Economics of Aging, which are conducting research on the demographic, economic, social, and health consequences of U.S. and global aging at 11 universities and organizations nationwide. The Committee urges NIA to sustain its investment in these activities in fiscal year 2021 and to consider, as the NACA review recommended, expanding research opportunities that will advance our understanding of the factors throughout the life course that contribute to the poor overall health of older people in America and the growing disparities in some parts of the country, as well as the disparities between the United States and other countries.

 National Institute of Child Health and Human Development

Population Research—The Committee recognizes the Institute for supporting innovative population research and research training programs, longitudinal surveys, research on the social determinants of health, and on the development of low-cost data archiving, data curation, and data sharing strategies that both protect survey participants and provide unparalleled access for researchers. The Committee encourages NICHD to highlight these strategies as it works with the NIH leadership to implement its data sharing and management policy. Further, the Committee urges NICHD to continue supporting large-scale data collection activities, especially prospective, population-representative longitudinal studies, and to continue its leadership in supporting research on the social determinants of health, morbidity, and mortality across the lifespan, including maternal and infant health.