Friday, November 04, 2005

House Foreign Aid Bill Boosts AIDS Funding

Before you get your hopes up, note that "foreign" in the title.
A compromise between House and Senate measures, the bill commits millions of dollars more to fight the spread of AIDS and other diseases in Africa and poor countries elsewhere. The AIDS effort is slated to get $2.8 billion — $629 million above last year's total and $268 million more than what the president
sought for this year.
This is H.R. 3057, "An act making appropriations for the Department of State, foreign operations, and related programs for the fiscal year ending September 30, 2006, and for other purposes." There is no appropriation for domestic needs for HIV/AIDS.
That being said, here are relevant snippets from the Congressional Research Services bill summary:
Title III: Bilateral Economic Assistance - Makes FY 2006 appropriations for: (1) expenses of the President in carrying out certain programs under the Foreign Assistance Act of 1961; (2) the United States Agency for International Development (USAID) for child survival and disease programs, including HIV/AIDS and other infectious diseases, and family planning/reproductive health programs; . . .
(15) the global HIV/AIDS initiative; . . .
(Sec. 6060) Obligates specified FY2006 international organization and program funds for the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA) (except for any country program in the PRC). Conditions such funds' availability on specified requirements, including that it does not fund abortions. Requires that funds be used to: (1) provide childbirth and obstetric care equipment, medicine, and supplies; (2) prevent and treat obstetric fistula; (3) provide contraceptives for the prevention of pregnancy and sexually transmitted infections, including HIV/AIDS; (4) reestablish maternal health services in
natural disaster-affected areas; (5) eliminate female genital mutilation; or (6) promote the access of unaccompanied women and other vulnerable people to health, food, and sanitation services.
. . .
(Sec. 6062) Directs the Secretary of the Treasury to instruct
U.S. executive directors at specified international financial institutions to oppose any loan, grant, strategy, or policy that would require user fees or service charges on poor people for primary education or primary health care, including prevention and treatment efforts for HIV/AIDS, malaria, tuberculosis,
and infant, child, and maternal well-being, in connection with the institution's lending programs.
. . .
(Sec. 6116) Directs the Coordinator of United States Government Activities to Combat HIV/AIDS Globally to report on anti-retroviral drug procurement.
. . .
(Sec. 6118) Transfers specified funds under this Act for: (1) a
U.S. contribution to the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria; and (2) the African Union Mission in Sudan.
The bill has passed both houses of Congress and now goes to the President for his signature.

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