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NEW YORK — A Republican congressman from Alabama has proposed a stopgap bill that would fund the Food and Drug Administration through the middle of December or until the government shutdown ends, though it is unlikely to pass in the Senate.
Last week, Rep. Robert Aderholt proposed the joint resolution, designed to ensure that the agency continues to receive funding until Dec. 15 or until the shutdown ends. However, Senate majority leader Harry Reid has said he will oppose such short-term funding bills. The federal government has remained shut down since Oct. 1, when Congress and the White House failed to reach an agreement on a fiscal year 2014 budget; Republicans in Congress have insisted that any budget agreement be tied to a delay or defunding of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act.
As part of its contingency staffing plan announced at the beginning of this month for the shutdown, the Department of Health and Human Services said the FDA would continue "limited" activities related to user-fee funded programs — such as reviews of generic drug applications — and such vital activities as consumer protection and high-risk recalls.