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Energy and Commerce Committee on Opioids

On Wednesday the House Energy and Commerce Committee took its turn at focusing on the Opioids epidemic.  This and other recent Congressional hearings are not without irony since they come against a backdrop of efforts to weaken the ACA and Medicaid which have increased access to critical substance use and mental health services.  The twin

GAO: HHS Action Needed on Neonatal Abstinence Syndrome

Earlier this month, the GAO issued a report, Federal Action Needed to Address Neonatal Abstinence Syndrome. The GAO report was the result of a House bill included in last year’s CARA Act passed last year.  The GAO’s conclusion: “The rising opioid crisis has caused a significant increase in the number of infants born and diagnosed

Differences on Child Care Tax Credit and Children’s Credit Being Muddled

The Washington debate of tax reform is in the process of confusing and potential combining two separate and significant tax credits, the Child Tax Credit and the Child and Dependent Care Tax Credit.  The first one is provided to parents with a child under 17.  The second is a long time established and important tax

CHIP Moves Forward in House and Senate Committees

On Wednesday, both the Senate Finance Committee and the House Energy and Commerce Committee moved their version of a CHIP reauthorization. The Senate bill sponsored by Senate Finance Chair Orrin Hatch (R-Utah) and Ranking Member Ron Wyden (D-Ore.), the Keeping Kids’ Insurance Dependable and Secure (KIDS) Act (S. 1827), would extend CHIP for five years

Home Visiting Approved by House, Waiting on Senate

Now that the House has acted on their version of a home visiting reauthorization (the Increasing Opportunity and Success for Children and Parents through Evidence-Based Home Visiting Act (H.R. 2824)), and the Senate has their version of the Maternal, Infant, and Early Childhood Home Visiting (MIECHV) program, (the Strong Families Act of 2017), advocates are strategizing how to extend

Home Visiting Approved by House, Waiting on Senate

On Tuesday, September 16, the House passed the Increasing Opportunity and Success for Children and Parents through Evidence-Based Home Visiting Act (H.R. 2824).  Support was not overwhelming at 214 to 209.  The Maternal, Infant, and Early Childhood Home Visiting (MIECHV) program, would be reauthorized for 5 years at its current funding level of $400 million, and include many other

Home Visiting  Moves In Committee on Partisan Vote

On Wednesday morning and evening, the House Ways and Means Committee debated and passed a re-authorization of the home visiting program. The legislation, the Maternal, Infant, and Early Childhood Home Visiting (MIECHV) program, named the Increasing Opportunity and Success for Children and Parents through Evidence-Based Home Visiting Act (H.R. 2824) passed on a party-line vote. Despite

Murray-Scott Release Child Care Expansion Bill

On Thursday, September 14, Senator Patty Murray (D-WA) and Congressman Bobby Scott (D-VA) introduced the Child Care for Working Families Act. The new legistaion attempts to set down a strong marker for what is truly needed to make improvements in the nation’s child care and early childhood education systems across the fifty states. It would

House Home Visiting Vote Possible this Week

The House Ways and Means Committee may meet this Wednesday to mark up a bill to reauthorize the home visiting program.  Two House bills have been introduced to extend the Maternal Infant Early Childhood Home Visiting (MIECHV) program which runs out on September 30.  The Republican bill (The Increasing Opportunity through Evidence-Based Home Visiting Act)

HHS Appropriations for FY 2018 Adopted By Bipartisan Senate Committee

On Wednesday and Thursday of last week the Senate Appropriations Committee acted on their version of an FY 2018 Labor-HHS-Education bill.  Now that the Congress has approved (on Friday) a CR that extends all FY 2018 funding until December 8, this bill will serve as a negotiating point with the House and Administration. The bill,