Summer 2022
Appropriations Process for FY23 Moves Ahead
The week of June 27-Jul 1, the House Appropriations Subcommittees completed work on several appropriations bills for Fiscal Year 2023 that contained priority programs for the AAVMC.

The Labor-HHS-Education bill would increase NIH to $47.459 billion, an increase of $2.5 billion over FY 2022.

The Agriculture Appropriations bill would increase the Veterinary Medicine Loan Repayment Program (VMLRP) to $10 million, an increase of $500,000, and would also increase the Veterinary Services Grant Program (VSGP) to $4 million, also an increase of $500,000 above FY 2022.

While there is a long way to go in the process this year, these early numbers from the House are very encouraging for our priorities! The Labor HHS Education fact sheet can be found here.

A table of the Agriculture appropriations can be viewed here.
USDA-APHIS Seeks Comments

USDA-APHIS is working on a new strategic plan to guide the agency for the next five years. AAVMC works closely with the agency on a variety of issues. The agency is seeking specific comments on the plan, due by July 31, 2022. Some of the key questions that they are asking include:

  • Are your interests represented in the plan?
  • Are there opportunities for APHIS to partner with others to achieve the goals and objectives?
  • Are there other trends for which the agency should be preparing?
  • Are there additional items APHIS should consider for the plan?

To see the plan framework and for information on how to comment, please click here.
Student Loans
On June 16th, the Senate passed the Joint Consolidation Loan Separation Act by unanimous consent. Here is more information about the bill. In effect, the bill would allow borrowers affected by spousal consolidation to separate their loans, based on the initial percentage that they brought in. There are many instances of former spouses being saddled with thousands in student loan debt that was not theirs. This legislation would alleviate that issue. The House is expected to take up the legislation later this year.

Also, on the House side, new legislation was introduced to improve the Public Service Loan Forgiveness Program (PSLF). The press release on the legislation can be found here. The bill would fix a problem with current PSLF law: the law requires applicants to be in a public service job at the time their loans are forgiven, even if they have already completed the 120 on-time payments. This often means that individuals who change jobs are deemed ineligible for loan relief, and this bill would simplify and correct that problem.

Finally, the Department of Education released proposed regulations to expand and improve targeted relief programs. Proposed regulations limit student loan interest capitalization, and improve borrower defense, Public Service Loan Forgiveness and other debt relief programs. The press release can be found here.
SECURE ACT Provision
On March 29, 2022 the House of Representatives overwhelmingly approved the Securing A Strong Retirement Act (SECURE), by a vote of 414 to 5. The Senate is currently working on companion legislation. A summary of the bill can be found here.

One of the key provisions of this bill, for students and graduates of AAVMC member institutions, involves student loan payments. Section 109 would permit an employer to make matching contributions under most retirement plans with respect to “qualified student loan payments.” This provision would basically allow employers to match student loan payments and receive credit for them, as if they were contributions to a retirement plan. AAVMC has supported this plan in both the House and Senate. Given the overwhelming bipartisan House vote, it is expected that the Senate will take up its bill later this year.
One Health
A new One Health website has been created at USDA/APHIS. The website can be found here.

The website is designed to help stakeholders and the public stay up to date on initiatives, projects and other activities that were funded by the $300 million allocated for SARS-COV-2 surveillance in the American Rescue Plan Act.

AAVMC was a primary support of this funding, working with our own COHA group to advocate for it.

Advocacy Letters

The AAVMC continues to work closely with a wide array of organizations that share our interests in supporting the advancement of academic veterinary medicine, food security and public health. The letters below reflect some of that recent activity.

ARPA-H Establishes Acting Deputy Director

Xavier Becerra announced the establishment of the Advanced Research Projects Agency for Health (ARPA-H) within the NIH and appointment of its acting deputy director on May 25. The related Federal Register notice highlighted the reorganization of the NIH to oversee ARPA-H and details several organizational and functional elements of the new research entity, including its role in providing “leadership for high-risk, high-reward biomedical and health research.”

Becerra also named Adam Russell, DPhil., as the acting deputy director of the new initiative. 
AAVMC Government Affairs

Please contact: AAVMC Governmental Affairs Director Kevin Cain at or 202-371-9195 (ext. 117) with any comments, questions and suggestions about our program.
AAVMC Newsletters

The AAVMC is working hard to create a culture of diversity and inclusion in every dimension of academic veterinary medicine. To foster this goal, the photographs and illustrations which are used in our communications programs are aspirational, and do not necessarily reflect the levels of diversity and inclusion that currently exist.

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