MLA and AALL Statement on Federal Depository Library Program

October 4, 2017 at 4:21 pm | Posted in Advocacy and Gov't Relations, Uncategorized | Leave a comment

MLA and the American Association of Law Librarians (AALL) have submitted a set of six recommendations, designed to update and improve access to the Federal Depository Library Program (FDLP). The purpose of the FDLP is to provide public access to materials published by the federal government. It does this primarily through a series of full and partial depository libraries located throughout the United States.

Most of these recommendations address issues related to the digital age. For example, recommendation one expands “the scope of the FDLP to include publications in all formats, including digital.” This announcement from MLA contains a link to the text from MLA/AALL along with the details for each recommendation. You can learn more about the FDLP here.

[Submitted by Gary Atwood, Chair, NAHSL Govt. Relations Comm.]

Advertisements

Major Update on Federal Funding

September 11, 2017 at 1:52 pm | Posted in Advocacy and Gov't Relations, Uncategorized | Leave a comment

The following is an update from the Adhoc Group for Medical Research. It provides highlights of FY 2018 funding for agencies such as the NIH and HHS.

President Signs CR Through Dec. 8

This morning, the House approved, 316-90, H.R. 601, a package with $15.25 billion disaster relief that also suspends the debt ceiling and continues funding for federal agencies (with a 0.6791 percent across the board cut) through Dec. 8. Among other provisions, the package also includes a provision (Sec. 138)  prohibiting HHS from reducing NIH support for facilities and administrative (F&A) expenses (similar to language included in the House and Senate Labor-HHS bills for FY 2018). The president signed the bill earlier this evening, thus granting appropriators an additional three months to complete work on the FY 2018 spending bills beyond the end of the fiscal year Sept. 30. The Senate had approved the measure a day earlier, 80-17. Bill text, a section by section summary, and press statement about the package are available on the Senate Appropriations Committee website.

 

House Begins Consideration of “Octo-bus”

Meanwhile, the House continued to move forward with consideration of its committee-passed spending bills for the full fiscal year. After approving a four bill “security package” (H.R. 3219) earlier in the year, the chamber on Sept. 6 began consideration of the “Make America Secure and Prosperous Appropriations Act” (H.R. 3354), which bundles the eight remaining spending bills, including the FY 2018 Labor-HHS-Education spending bill (H.R. 3358, H.Rept. 115-234) approved by the House Appropriations Committee in July. The House Rules Committee ruled more than 200 amendments in order, including 59 amendments to the Labor-HHS-Education portion of the package (Division F). The White House Sept. 5 issued a statement of administration policy in support of the legislation, but expresses concern with language in Division F prohibiting the administration from reducing NIH support for facilities and administrative expenses. The House is expected to continue consideration of H.R. 3354 when lawmakers return to Washington next week.

 

Senate Committee Approves FY 18 Bill With $2 Billion Increase for NIH

The Senate Appropriations Committee has released text of its FY 2018 Labor-HHS-Education spending bill (S. 1771, S. Rept. 115-150), which the committee approved, 29-2, on Sept. 7. As you know, the bill provides $36.084 billion for NIH in FY 2018, including the full $496 million provided for the agency through the Innovation Account established in the 21st Century Cures Act, a $2 billion increase for NIH overall (on preliminary review, without the Cures funding, the bill provides $35.588 billion, a $1.856 billion or 5.5 percent increase above the comparable FY 2017 funding level). The bill rejects a number of the president’s FY 2018 proposals: among other provisions, the bill continues funding for the Fogarty International Center, maintains AHRQ as an independent agency rather than consolidating it within NIH, blocks the administration from reducing NIH support for facilities and administrative expenses, and maintains the HHS salary cap at Executive Level II.

 

[Submitted by Gary Atwood, Chair, NAHSL Govt. Relations Comm.]

AAMC Releases Statement on the Proposal to Rescind DACA

September 5, 2017 at 4:21 pm | Posted in Advocacy and Gov't Relations, Uncategorized | Leave a comment

The president and CEO of the Association of American Medical Colleges (AAMC) Darrell G. Kirch, MD, issued a statement in response to the Trump administration’s announcement that it will rescind the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program. In it, he expressed the organization’s stance that “medical students, medical residents, and researchers with DACA status are important to the fabric of the nation’s health care system, and their participation benefits all patients.” Furthermore, he stated that, “We are extremely dismayed by the administration’s decision to rescind the current executive action establishing DACA.” He also called on Congress to enact some sort of permanent solution that would address the needs of those with DACA status in the healthcare workforce.

Click here for the full statement.

[Submitted by Gary Atwood, Chair, NAHSL Govt. Relations Comm.]

Victory for Access to CRS Reports

July 3, 2017 at 12:06 pm | Posted in Advocacy and Gov't Relations | Leave a comment

Please read below about a significant development in the quest to make all Congressional Research Service (CRS) reports available to the public:

Dear Advocates,

I’m happy to report that the House Appropriations Committee just took a giant leap toward making Congressional Research Service (CRS) reports available to the public. During its mark up of the Fiscal Year 2018 Legislative Branch Appropriations bill, the full Committee approved language directing CRS to report back to the Committee within 90 days of enactment with a plan to make its non-confidential reports available to the public.

This has been more than 20 years in the making, and it was only possible thanks to the hard work of the many advocates−including many of you–who have written, called, tweeted, and spoken to their members of Congress about CRS over the years.

While there are still some hurdles to get over (namely, the bill must pass the House, and there must be a companion bill in the Senate), the report language in legislative branch appropriations bills is generally adhered to even if not passed into law.

Please join us in celebrating this win for public access! AALL will continue to work hard to make sure public access to these valuable reports becomes a reality in the coming months. We’ll will provide more analysis and information about next steps in the July Washington eBulletin, out on Monday.

Here is the appropriations report language:

“Public Access to CRS Reports: The Committee directs the Library of Congress’s Congressional Research Service (CRS) to make available to the public, all non-confidential reports. The Committee has debated this issue for several years, and after considering debate and testimony from entities inside the legislative branch and beyond the Committee believes the publishing of CRS reports will not impede CRS’s core mission in any impactful way and is in keeping with the Committee’s priority of full transparency to the American people. Within 90 days of enactment of this act CRS is directed to submit a plan to its oversight committees detailing its recommendations for implementing this effort as well as any associated cost estimates. Where practicable, CRS is encouraged to consult with the Government Publishing Office (GPO) in developing their plan; the Committee believes GPO could be of assistance in this effort.”

This message was posted by Mary Langman from the MLA national office.

 

[Submitted by Gary Atwood, Chair, NAHSL Govt. Relations Comm.]

Taxation Without Information

June 30, 2017 at 8:23 am | Posted in Advocacy and Gov't Relations, Uncategorized | Leave a comment

As this article from The Scholarly Kitchen points out, we as taxpayers are being denied access to information that we’ve paid for and continue to pay for in some instances. As the author cleverly notes, this “taxation without representation” isn’t just an academic argument. It has real consequences as the people of Flint Michigan know all too well.

So as we gather to celebrate the 4th of July and remember the cry of “No taxation without representation!” let’s also stop and think about the consequences of “no taxation without information” for ourselves and our nation.

Happy 4th of July!

(Credit to M.J. Tooey from the University of Baltimore for posting a message about this article on the AAHSL listserv.)

[Submitted by Gary Atwood, Chair, NAHSL Govt. Relations Comm.]

Next Page »

Create a free website or blog at WordPress.com.
Entries and comments feeds.