The Senate passed their $49.9 billion fiscal year 2023 budget proposal. The House of Representatives passed their version of the budget last month. Senate and House leaders will now appoint a conference committee of three Senators and three members of the House of Representatives to negotiate the spending and policy differences between the Senate and House proposals. MassBio will weigh-in with House and Senate Conferees, once appointed, and Leadership in both Branches, to advocate for the inclusion of the House copay sunset extension language to 2026 in the final FY2023 Budget Conference Committee Report.
In Washington DC, the U.S. Senate HELP Committee introduced the FDA Safety and Landmark Advancements Act (FDASLA). The FDASLA is a negotiated bipartisan package from Chairwoman Patty Murray (D-WA) and Ranking Member Richard Burr (R-NC). The legislation reauthorizes the Food and Drug Administration’s (FDA) prescription drug, generic drug, biosimilar, and medical device user fee agreements. In the coming weeks, the Senate HELP Committee will begin debating the legislation. The Committee must vote to advance the legislation before it can be put forward for consideration by the entire Senate.
HHS Secretary Becerra has appointed Adam H. Russell as Deputy Director Advanced Research Projects Agency for Health, also known as ARPA-H. ARPA-H is a new initiative launched by President Joe Biden through the National Institutes of Health (NIH). The program is aimed to lead medical breakthroughs based on the Intelligence Advanced Research Projects Activity (IARPA) and the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA).
The Bonding, Capital Expenditures and State Assets Committee holds a hearing on the infrastructure bond bill (H.4798). Gov. Charlie Baker filed the bill in March, and earlier this month the bill was amended by the Legislature’s Transportation Committee.
The Massachusetts Democratic Party holds their annual convention in Worcester on Friday and Saturday. Statewide candidates for Governor, Lieutenant Governor, Attorney General, Auditor, and Secretary of State will need to secure the support of at least 15 percent of delegates to qualify for the Sept. 6 primary ballot, and anyone who wins a majority will earn the party’s official endorsement. The Democratic primary for Treasurer and Receiver General is uncontested.