National Alliance on Mental Illness
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Senators Specter and Harkin Offer Amendment to Boost Health Research and Services FundingMarch 13, 2006
Work begins this week in the Senate on the FY 2007 budget resolution -- the fiscal blueprint that sets limits for all spending -- and Senators Arlen Specter (R-PA) and Tom Harkin (D-IA) are planning an amendment to boost overall spending on health research and services by $7 billion above the President's request. This additional $7 billion in budget authority would be added to the FY 2007 Labor-HHS-Education Appropriations bill that will be taken up by Congress this coming summer. It is this Labor-HHS funding bill that includes the budgets for the National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH) and the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA).
Passage of the Specter-Harkin Amendment later this week would ensure that cuts proposed for both NIMH and SAMHSA for FY 2007 can be restored. NAMI urges advocates to contact their Senators and urge support for the Harkin-Specter Amendment. The vote on the amendment could be as early as March 15.