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2021 Government Spending Measure Enacted

On Sept. 30, just hours before the midnight deadline to prevent a government shutdown, the U.S. Senate passed a temporary measure to fund government programs for fiscal year (FY) 2021, following House passage of the measure last week. Fiscal year 2020 funding for government programs, including the NIH and CDC, expired on Sept. 30, 2020, so Congress and the Administration enacted temporary legislation to keep government programs operating for FY2021. The President signed the legislation into law.

The spending measure, which funds all government programs at current FY2020 funding levels until Dec. 11, 2020, provides NIH with needed authority to ensure cost extensions on five-year research grants. Following the November presidential election, congressional leaders and the Administration will need to either pass another temporary spending measure or finalize FY2021 government spending.

At the end of July, the House of Representatives passed its FY 2021 health spending bill, which proposes a funding increase of about 13 percent for the NIH. Specifically, the bill provides $47.5 billion in total funding for the NIH in FY2021, a $5.5 billion increase over FY2020 NIH funding of $41.5 billion. This bill will serve as the House’s negotiating mark with the Senate. The Senate did not pass any FY2021 spending bills through committee, so the chamber does not have recommended numbers. The ATS Washington Office will continue to monitor the progress of FY2021 spending and alert members when their action is needed.

Last Reviewed: October 2020