2013 Appropriations Process Contains Good News for Aging Programs—So Far
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2013 Appropriations Process Contains Good News for Aging Programs—So Far

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June 15, 2012

By the Numbers

See our table of FY13 appropriations for aging services programs

The FY13 federal appropriations process is moving quickly through Senate Committees.

While the news so far is generally good for aging programs, final appropriations are unlikely until next year.

Last week, the Senate Appropriations Committee approved its FY13 Labor, Health and Human Services, Education and Related Agencies Appropriations bill. Included were significant investments for prevention programs for older adults:

  • Chronic Disease Self-Management Program (CDSMP)—$10 million: This funding is provided under the Prevention and Public Health Fund created by the Affordable Care Act.

  • Elder Falls Prevention—$12 million: A $10 million increase for Elder Falls Prevention from the Prevention and Public Health Fund would provide the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) with a total of $5 million to continue research on evidence-based programs and $7 million in new funding would go to the Administration for Community Living (ACL) for implementation of these proven interventions. A similar increase was approved last year in the Senate, but was removed from the final bill.

  • Elder Justice Act—$8 million: The Elder Justice Act would receive first-time funding for Adult Protective Services demonstration projects "to test and evaluate innovative approaches to preventing and responding to elder abuse."

  • Older Americans Act and Administration on Aging (AoA)—Level funding: In this budget environment, level funding is encouraging. Unfortunately there was no restoration of Program Innovations (Title IV) funding, and it would remain at zero. The Committee did accept the Administration’s recommendation to transfer the State Health Insurance Assistance Program (SHIP) to ACL but did not agree to transfer the Senior Community Service Employment Program (SCSEP).

There is also good news for aging programs in other appropriations bills:

Department of Housing & Urban Development

  • Housing Counseling: The Senate bill increases funding for Housing Counseling, which includes funding for reverse mortgage counseling, to $55 million and the House bill level-funds it at $45 million.

  • Section 202 Housing for the Elderly: The Senate bill provides level funding of $375 million for Section 202, and the House bill increases funding (though not as much as the Administration requested) to $425 million.

Agriculture Department

  • Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP): Both the House and Senate bills call for just under $80 billion for SNAP benefits.

  • Commodity Supplemental Food Program (CSFP): The Senate bill adopts the Administration’s request for $187 million, which is the amount needed to maintain current service levels with increases in food prices. The House bill cuts funding to $173 million, which could lead to approximately 43,000 low-income seniors and other low-income participants losing their food packages.

The House Appropriations Committee is expected to adopt its Housing and Agriculture appropriations bills soon. We are still waiting on confirmation of a House Labor-HHS Subcommittee markup.

Thank your lawmakers!

If your lawmakers serve on the Senate or House Appropriations Committees, please thank them for these investments to assist and empower the most vulnerable older adults. 

Your Senators and Representatives will be back home during the July 4 and August recesses. Invite them to visit these programs in your community and meet the seniors who are benefiting from this funding. 

If any of the following are your Senators, please make a special effort tor say thanks:

  • Committee Chairman Inouye (HI) and Subcommittee Chairman Harkin (IA) for their support for Elder Falls Prevention and CDSMP investments

  • Sens. Kohl (WI) and Mikulski (MD) for their continued leadership on Elder Falls Prevention

Find your legislators' contact information using our easy online look-up service. As always, please share your advocacy efforts with us!

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