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WASHINGTON, D.C. – On Wednesday evening, the U.S. House Appropriations Committee approved the draft fiscal year 2019 Labor, Health and Human Services, and Education (LHHS) funding bill on a vote of 30-22. The legislation includes funding for programs within the Department of Labor, the Department of Health and Human Services, the Department of Education, and other related agencies.

In total, the draft bill includes $177.1 billion in discretionary funding, essentially the same as the 2018 enacted level. The bill targets investments in medical research, public health, biodefense, education, and important activities that help promote job readiness. The legislation also includes several provisions to rein in unnecessary regulations and to protect the sanctity of life.

"This bill supports continued life-saving efforts to curb the opioid epidemic and provides loan repayment for Substance Use Disorder treatment professionals in an effort to encourage more medical students to be a part of the solution. It also invests in critical research for diseases like cancer and Alzheimer's, while also boosting rural health programs and funding for infectious disease rapid response," said Rogers, Chairman Emeritus of the House Appropriations Committee. "The legislation also includes funding for job training, educational programs for low-income and first-generation college students, as well as employment services for veterans. I'm also proud that this bill protects the sanctity of life and provides proper care for unaccompanied immigrant children and refugee families." 

Kentucky will benefit from several key programs in the bill, specifically boosting efforts to combat the drug abuse crisis, enhancing job training and improving educational opportunities, such as:

Drug Programs: The bill includes $2.4 billion for HHS’s flagship Substance Abuse Prevention and Treatment Block Grant, $516 million for the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's (CDC) Opioid Overdose Prevention and Surveillance, $80 million for drug courts, and $112 million for grants to build treatment capacity in states most in need. The bill also carves out $20 million of the $105 million total allocated to the National Health Service Corps specifically for loan repayment for Substance Use Disorder (SUD) treatment professionals. 

  • Rural Health Programs: The legislation provides $11 million for state offices of rural health, $26 million for Small Hospital Improvement Grants, $26.8 million for CDC’s National Diabetes Prevention Program, and $12 million for Black Lung clinics. 

  • Training and Employment Services: The legislation invests $3.47 billion to help support crucial apprenticeship, employment training, and trade adjustment programs.

  • TRIO: The bill provides $1.06 billion targeted to help serve low-income individuals, first-generation college students, and individuals with disabilities afford the costs of higher education. Universities across Kentucky rely on this funding to attract and admit eligible students.

The bill now moves on to the U.S. House of Representatives for consideration.

For a summary of the bill, please visit:
For the bill report, please visit:
For the text of the bill, please visit: