On July 13, the House Appropriations Committee approved its Fiscal Year (FY) 2022 defense appropriations bill, which provides $10 million in continued annual funding for the Military Burn Research Program. Securing funding in this bill would not have been possible without the advocacy efforts of ABA members who were instrumental in convincing 55 bipartisan House members to sign on to a letter emphasizing their support for this important program.
The House is expected to pass most of its spending bills before the end of the month. However, the Senate has yet to introduce any spending bills for FY 2022, and its timeline for moving forward is uncertain. Senate leaders from both parties have yet to reach agreement on overall spending levels, and any agreement reached in the Senate on FY 2022 spending would have to be reconciled with House appropriations figures. Adding to the uncertainty is the debt limit, which will be reinstated on August 1, 2021. Given these factors, Congress may not be able to reach an agreement on spending bills before FY 2021 ends on September 30, meaning stopgap spending bills may be necessary to keep the government funded through the fall or winter as lawmakers work to come to an agreement. As these discussions continue, we will be sure to continue working with congressional offices to ensure $10 million is provided in for peer-reviewed military burn research in the final defense appropriations bill.