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House State-Foreign Operations Appropriations Subcommittee Approves FY10 Funding Measure

The House State-Foreign Operations Appropriations Subcommittee “unanimously approved its FY10 funding measure without any amendments” on Wednesday, “deferring expected fights for the full committee markup in a week,” CongressDaily reports.

The bill provides “increased funding for additional department and USAID employees,” according to Congress Daily. After brief discussions about whether the $48.8 billion package represented a decrease or a substantial increase over current funding for foreign operations, the “unnumbered appropriations bill was reported to the full committee on a voice vote,” the publication reports. According to Congress Daily, “The bill is $3.2 billion less than President Obama’s budget request for $52.04 billion.”

The bill would provide tight oversight of foreign affairs funding, including $146.5 million for State Department and USAID inspector generals, according to State and Foreign Operations Appropriations Subcommittee Chairwoman Nita Lowey, (D-NY) and subcommittee ranking member Representative Kay Granger, (R-Texas) (Kreisher, CongressDaily, 6/17).

A statement from Lowey’s office said the bill provides “a total of $5.7 billion for global HIV/AIDS activities, which is $100 million above the President’s request, and $200 million above the FY 2009 enacted level.” According to Lowey, the amount includes $700 million for the Global Fund. Additionally, the bill includes funding for voluntary family planning services, which Lowey said was a “priority” of the committee, as well as $75 million “to address pandemic preparedness and response” (Congresswoman Nita Lowey release, 6/17).

A press release from the organization Health GAP writes that the markup indicates that the U.S. is going to “fall far short of its commitment to fund fully its fair share” of the Global Fund To Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria’s resource needs (Health GAP/PR Newswire, 6/17).