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Director's Report to the National Advisory Council on Drug Abuse - May, 2009



Congressional Affairs (Prepared May 1, 2009)

Appropriations/Funding

American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA)(text from Dr. Volkow's message on NIDA website)
On February 17, 2009, President Obama signed the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 (ARRA). Among the goals of the ARRA are to preserve and create jobs, promote economic recovery, and provide investments to increase economic efficiency by spurring technological advances in science and health. NIH is grateful for the opportunity afforded by the ARRA to provide economic stimulus to the nation while furthering our mission to uncover new knowledge that will lead to better health for everyone. NIH will receive $10 billion through the ARRA for use over the next two years (2009 and 2010). Of this, $1 billion will be invested in extramural construction (administered through the National Center for Research Resources), $0.8 billion will be provided to the Office of the NIH Director for extending and developing appropriate programs, and $7.4 billion will be provided to the NIH institutes and centers (proportional to their appropriations). Staff throughout NIH, including those at NIDA, are working diligently to determine how to invest these resources. A major consideration is that these funds must be distributed over the next two years to meet the goals of the ARRA. We are aware of how interested you are in these programs and will be providing more details as they become available. Please visit http://archives.drugabuse.gov/Recovery/ for more information.

Appropriations
On March 11, 2009, the President signed into law H.R. 1105, the FY 2009 Omnibus Appropriations Act, as P.L. 111-8. NIH received $30.3 billion, $937,500,000 above the 2008 level the budget request. NIDA received $1.033 billion, as compared to $1.001 billion for FY 2008.

Transition - Executive Branch

Kathleen Sebelius, formerly the Governor of Kansas, was confirmed by the Senate as the Secretary of HHS.

Seattle Police Chief Gil Kerlikowske has been nominated by the President to be the Director of ONDCP. The Senate Judiciary Committee has approved the nomination, and it is awaiting a vote in the full Senate.

Treatment Research Institute CEO and long-time addiction researcher A. Thomas McLellan, Ph.D. has been nominated to be the Deputy Director of ONDCP. His nomination hearing is pending.

Events of Interest

Friends of NIDA Bring Criminal Justice Substance Abuse Treatment Research to the Hill
In conjunction with the House Addiction, Treatment and Recovery Caucus, The Friends of NIDA coalition held another successful congressional briefing on March 27, 2009. The American Psychological Association took the organizational lead and 23 scientific societies and professional organizations cosponsored the event to educate congressional staff on the topic of "Implementing Effective Substance Abuse Treatment in the Criminal Justice System."

NIDA Director Nora Volkow, MD began the briefing with an overview of NIDA's criminal justice substance abuse treatment research portfolio. Temple University Professor Steven Belenko, PhD, followed with a presentation on the need to expand effective substance abuse treatment for offenders to enhance public safety. Linda Jalbert, a drug court graduate and former legislative assistant for Senator Susan Collins, concluded the briefing by sharing her story of addiction, prison, treatment, and recovery.

NIH Appropriations hearing in the House

On March 26, NIH Acting Director Dr. Raynard Kington testified before the House Appropriations Subcommittee on Labor, HHS, and Education. The topics for discussion were NIH implementation of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 and the status of the National Children's Study.

Legislation of Particular Interest

Parity Legislation enacted into law. In October 2008, after 12 years of effort, Congress passed and the President signed legislation designed to ensure parity for substance abuse and mental health in insurance coverage. The legislative language, the Paul Wellstone and Pete Domenici Mental Health Parity and Addiction Equity Act of 2008, was included in the economic recovery bill that moved through Congress last fall.

Additional parity-related legislation. In January 2009 the House and Senate introduced legislation to reauthorize the Children's Health Insurance Program, to amend Title XXI of the Social Security Act to extend and improve the Children's Health Insurance Program, and for other purposes. Section 502 of this bill included substance abuse and mental health parity for insurance coverage. Both bodies passed the legislation and it was signed by the President on February 4, 2009.

Tobacco. On April 2, 2009, the House passed H.R. 1256, the Family Smoking Prevention and Tobacco Control Act, a bill to protect the public health by providing the Food and Drug Administration with certain authority to regulate tobacco products. The bill was transmitted to the Senate, where action is pending.

Primate Safety. On February 24, 2009, the House passed H.R. 80, the Captive Primate Safety Act of 2009. The measure would amend section 3371 of the Lacey Act Amendments of 1981 to include in the list of prohibited wildlife species 'any non-human primate.' Among other provisions, the bill would further prohibit transport of primates by certain parties that are not specifically trained or certified for purposes of providing care for the primates or assisting handicapped persons who are unable to provide such veterinary and health care to primates. This measure would not amend or in any way change section 3372 of the Lacey Act, which includes a provision exempting Federal research agencies from such limitations on transportation of primates.

Bills of Interest

[For the full text and additional information about any bill, go to the Library of Congress website at http://thomas.loc.gov].

H.R. 18 - On January 6, 2009, Representative Roscoe Bartlett (R-MD) introduced the "Powder-Crack Cocaine Penalty Equalization Act of 2009," to amend the Controlled Substances Act and the Controlled Substances Import and Export Act with respect to penalties for powder cocaine and crack cocaine offenses. The bill was referred to the Judiciary and Energy and Commerce Committees.

H.R. 179 - On January 6, 2009, Representative Jose Serrano (D-NY) introduced the Community AIDS and Hepatitis Prevention Act, to permit the use of federal funds for syringe exchange programs for purposes of reducing the transmission of bloodborne pathogens, including HIV and viral hepatitis. The bill was referred to the House Committee on Energy and Commerce.

H.R. 193 - On January 6, 2009, Representative Pete Stark (D-CA) introduced the AmeriCare Health Care Act of 2009, to amend the Social Security Act and Internal Revenue Service Code of 1986 to provide for an AmeriCare that assures the provision of health insurance coverage to all residents, and for other purposes. Section 2221(h) of this Act would provide benefits for "mental health services and for substance abuse treatment in the same manner as such benefits are made available for medical and surgical services. The bill was referred to three committees: Energy and Commerce; Ways and Means; and Education and Labor.

H.R. 265 - On January 7, 2009, Representative Sheila Jackson-Lee (D-TX) introduced the Drug Sentencing Reform and Cocaine Kingpin Trafficking Act of 2009, to target cocaine kingpins and address sentencing disparity between crack and powder cocaine. The bill was referred to the Judiciary and Energy and Commerce Committees.

H.R. 439 - On January 9, 2009, Representative Dennis Rehberg (R-MT) introduced the Family-Based Meth Treatment Access Act of 2009, to amend the Public Health Service Act regarding residential treatment programs for pregnant and parenting women, a program to reduce substance abuse among nonviolent offenders, and for other services. The bill was referred to the Committee on Energy and Commerce.

H.R. 554 - On February 11, 2009, the House passed the National Nanotechnology Initiative Amendments (NNI) of 2009. The measure was introduced by Representative Bart Gordon (D-TN) on January 15. In general, H.R. 554 would require all agencies participating in the NNI to support the setting of standards for nanotechnology. The bill was sent to the Senate where it is pending.

H.R. 756 - On March 30, 2009, the House passed the National Pain Care Policy Act. Relevant to NIH, the bill would (1) encourage the NIH Director, through the NIH Pain Consortium, to continue and expand an aggressive pain research program, (2) require the NIH Pain Consortium to submit annual recommendations on pain research initiatives that could be paid for by the Common Fund, and (3) require the HHS Secretary to establish an Interagency Pain Research Coordinating Committee, which would include NIH membership. The bill is pending in the Senate as S. 660.

H.R. 758 - On January 28, 2009, Representative Diana DeGette (D-CO) introduced the Pediatric Research Consortia Establishment Act to amend Title IV of the PHS Act to provide for the establishment of pediatric research consortia. The bill was referred to the House Committee on Energy and Commerce. See S.353

H.R. 836 - On February 3, 2009, Representative Earl Pomeroy (D-ND) introduced the Brewers Excise and Economic Relief (BEER) Act, which if enacted would effectively return the federal beer excise tax to its pre-1991 levels. The bill was referred to the Committee on Ways and Means.

H.R. 872 - On February 4, 2009, Representative Diana DeGette (D-CO) introduced the Stem Cell Research Improvement Act of 2009. The bill would require the Secretary to conduct and support research that uses human embryonic stem cells, regardless of the date on which such cells were derived. The bill outlines certain ethical criteria, and would require that the Secretary, in consultation with the Director of NIH, issue guidelines to carry out the provisions of the legislation within 90 days of enactment. H.R. 872 also provides that the Secretary may issue guidelines on research involving other human stem cells, as determined to be scientifically warranted by the Director of NIH. The bill was referred to the House Committee on Energy and Commerce.

H.R. 873 - On February 4, 2009, Representative Diana DeGette (D-CO) introduced H.R. 873, the Stem Cell Research Enhancement Act of 2009. Like H.R. 872, the bill would require the Secretary to conduct and support research that uses human embryonic stem cells. The bill sets out certain ethical criteria, and would require that the Secretary, in consultation with the Director of NIH, issue final guidelines to carry out the provisions of the legislation within 60 days of enactment. H.R. 873 was referred to the House Committee on Energy and Commerce. See S. 487

H.R. 877 - On February 4, 2009, Representative Randy Forbes (R-VA) introduced H.R. 877, the Patients First Act of 2009. The bill would require the Secretary of HHS to conduct and support research using stem cells, including pluripotent stem cells that "have the flexibility of embryonic stem cells (whether or not such pluripotent stem cells have an embryonic source)." The Secretary, after consultation with Director of NIH, would be required to issue guidelines within 90 days that would prioritize research that has the "potential for near term clinical benefit in human patients." The bill also would add "stem cells" to the list of issues for which a summary of research activities is required as part of the NIH biennial report. H.R. 877 was referred to the House Committee on Energy and Commerce.

H.R. 1028 - On February 12, 2009, Representative Lucille Roybal-Allard (D-CA) introduced the Support 21 Act of 2009, to provide additional support for the efforts of community coalitions, health care providers, parents and others to prevent and reduce underage drinking, and for other purposes. The bill was referred to the Committee on Energy and Commerce.

H.R. 1429 - On March 17, 2009, the House passed the Stop AIDS in Prison Act of 2009, to provide for an effective HIV/AIDS program in Federal prisons. The bill was transmitted to the Senate, where it is pending.

H.R. 1483 - On March 12, 2009, Representative Patrick Kennedy (D-RI) introduced the National Neurotechnology Initiative Act, to direct the Secretary of HHS to implement a National Neurotechnology Initiative, and for other purposes. The bill was referred to the Committee on Energy and Commerce. See S. 586

H.R. 1715 - On March 25, 2009, Representative Diana DeGette (D-CO) introduced H.R. 1715, the Protection for Participants in Research Act of 2009. The bill includes several modifications to the current system for protections of human research participants. H.R. 1715 was referred to the House Committee on Energy and Commerce.

H.R. 2138 - On April 28, 2009, Representative Patrick Kennedy (D-RI) introduced the Services, Education and Rehabilitation for Veterans (SERV) Act, to provide grants to establish veterans treatment courts. The bill was referred to the Committee on the Judiciary. See S. 902

S. 77 - On January 6, 2009, Senator John Kerry (D-MA) introduced the Children's Mental Health Parity Act, to amend Title XXI of the Social Security Act to provide for equal coverage of mental health services under the State Children's Health Insurance Program. The bill was referred to the Committee on Finance. See H.R. 2 and S. 275.

S. 114 - On January 6, 2009, Senator Daniel Inouye (D-HI) introduced the National Center for Social Work Research Act, to amend the Public Health Service Act to provide for the establishment of a National Center for Social Work Research within the National Institutes of Health. The bill was referred to the Committee on Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions.

S. 132 - On January 6, 2009, Senator Diane Feinstein (D-CA) introduced the Gang Abatement and Prevention Act of 2009, to increase and enhance law enforcement resources committed to investigation and prosecution of violent gangs, to deter and punish violent gang crime, to protect law-abiding citizens and communities from violent criminals, to revise and enhance criminal penalties for violent crimes, to expand and improve gang prevention programs, and for other purposes. Section 313 of the bill establishes a National Youth Anti-Heroin Media Campaign at the Office of National Drug Control Policy. The bill was referred to the Committee on the Judiciary.

S. 177 - On January 8, 2009, Senator Russ Feingold (D-WI) introduced S. 177, the Strengthening Our Economy Through Small Business Innovation Act of 2009. The measure would extend the SBIR program through 2022 and the STTR program through 2023. Additionally, S. 177 would increase SBIR set-aside allocations to 5 percent by 2010, 7.5 percent by 2011, and 10 percent by 2012. The set-aside levels for the STTR program would also double by 2010, and then increase to 0.8 percent by 2011 and to 1.0 percent by 2012. The measure also proposes to increase the SBIR and STTR award levels for phase 1 and 2 grants to $300,000 and $2.2 million, respectively. Finally, the bill would give greater priority consideration to research areas, including those related to energy, security, transportation, and water. S. 177 currently has no co-sponsors and was referred to the Senate Committee on Small Business and Entrepreneurship.

S. 353 - On January 29, 2009, Senator Sherrod Brown (D-OH) introduced the Pediatric Research Consortia Establishment Act to amend Title IV of the PHS Act to provide for the establishment of pediatric research consortia. The bill was referred to the House Committee on Energy and Commerce. See H.R. 758.

S. 487 - On February 26, 2009, Senator Tom Harkin (D-IA) introduced the Stem Cell Research Enhancement Act of 2009, which was referred to the Committee on Health, Education, Labor and Pensions. See H.R. 873.

S. 459 - On February 24, 2009, Senator Claire McCaskill (D-MO) introduced the SUPPORT for Substance Use Disorders Act, to improve and enhance substance use disorder programs for members of the armed forces, and for other purposes. The bill was referred to the Committee on Armed Services.

S. 586 - On March 12, 2009, Senator Patty Murray (D-WA) introduced the National Neurotechnology Initiative Act, to direct the Secretary of HHS to implement a National Neurotechnology Initiative, and for other purposes. The bill was referred to the Committee on Health, Education, Labor and Pensions. See H.R. 1483

S. 660 - On March 19, 2009, Senator Orrin Hatch (R-UT), introduced S. 660, the National Pain Care Policy Act. The NIH provisions in S. 660 are identical to H.R. 756, described above. S. 660 was referred to the Senate Committee on Health, Education, Labor and Pensions.

S. 714 - On March 26, 2009, Senator James Webb (D-VA) introduced the National Criminal Justice Commission Act of 2009, a bill to establish the National Criminal Justice Commission. The bill was referred to the Committee on the Judiciary.

S. 754 - On March 31, 2009, Senator Jay Rockefeller (D-WV) introduced the Methadone Treatment and Protection Act of 2009, to provide for increased federal oversight of methadone treatment. The bill was referred to the Committee on Health, Education, Labor and Pensions.

S. 902 - On April 27, 2009, Senator John Kerry (D-MA) introduced the Services, Education and Rehabilitation for Veterans (SERV) Act, to provide grants to establish veterans treatment courts. The bill was referred to the Committee on the Judiciary.

S. 914 - On April 28, 2009, Senator Arlen Specter (D-PA) introduced S. 914, the Cures Acceleration Network and National Institutes of Health Reauthorization Act of 2009. This legislation would (1) establish the Cures Acceleration Network, an independent agency that would make awards to accelerate the development of cures and treatment of diseases, (2) elevate NCMHD to institute status, (3) increase NIH's authorization of appropriations section to $40 billion for FY 2010 and such sums as may be necessary for each of the FYs 2011 to 2012, and (4) require the Director of NIH to develop and enforce conflict of interest policies. S. 914 was referred to the Senate Committee on Health, Education, Labor and Pensions (HELP).

111th Congress

As a result of the November 2008 elections, Democrats have strengthened their majorities in both the Senate and House of Representatives. The most relevant committee-related information for NIDA is listed below.

Senate

Committee on Appropriations, Subcommittee on Labor, Health and Human Services, and Education
Democrats: Tom Harkin (IA) (Chair), Daniel Inouye (HI), Arlen Specter (PA), Herb Kohl (WI), Patty Murray (WA), Mary Landrieu (LA), Richard Durbin (IL), Jack Reed (RI), Mark Pryor (AR)
Republicans: Thad Cochran (MS) (Ranking Member), Judd Gregg (NH), Kay Bailey Hutchison (TX), Richard Shelby (AL), Lamar Alexander (TN)

Committee on Appropriations, Subcommittee on Commerce, Justice, Science and Related Agencies
Democrats: Barbara Mikulski (MD) (Chair), Daniel Inouye (HI), Patrick Leahy (VT), Herb Kohl (WI), Byron Dorgan (ND), Dianne Feinstein (CA), Jack Reed (RI), Frank Lautenberg (NJ), Ben Nelson (NE), Mark Pryor (AR)
Republicans: Richard Shelby (AL) (Ranking Member), Judd Gregg (NH), Mitch McConnell (KY), Kay Bailey Hutchison (TX), Sam Brownback (KS), Lamar Alexander (TN), George Voinovich (OH), Lisa Murkowski (AK)

Committee on Appropriations, Subcommittee on Financial Services and General Government
Democrats: Richard Durbin (IL) (Chair), Mary Landrieu (LA), Frank Lautenberg (NJ), Ben Nelson (NE), Jon Tester (MT)
Republicans: Susan Collins (ME) (Ranking Member), Christopher Bond (MO), Lisa Murkowski (AK)

Committee on Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions (HELP)
Democrats: Edward Kennedy (MA) (Chair), Christopher Dodd (CT), Tom Harkin (IA), Barbara Mikulski (MD), Jeff Bingaman (NM), Patty Murray (WA), Jack Reed (RI), Bernard Sanders (I-VT), Sherrod Brown (OH), Robert Casey (PA), Kay Hagan (NC), Jeff Merkley (OR)
Republicans: Michael Enzi (WY) (Ranking Member), Judd Gregg (NH), Lamar Alexander (TN), Richard Burr (NC), Johnny Isakson (GA), John McCain (AZ), Orrin Hatch (UT), Lisa Murkowski (AK), Tom Coburn (OK), Pat Roberts (KS)

Committee on the Judiciary, Subcommittee on Crime and Drugs
Democrats: Richard Durbin (IL) (Chair), Herb Kohl (WI), Dianne Feinstein (CA), Russell Feingold (WI), Charles Schumer (NY), Benjamin Cardin (MD), Amy Klobuchar (MN), Edward Kaufman (DE), Arlen Specter (PA)
Republicans: Lindsey Graham (SC) (Chair), Orrin Hatch (UT), Charles Grassley (IA), Jeff Sessions (AL), Tom Coburn (OK)

Caucus on International Narcotics Control (this is an officially recognized Caucus, established by law in 1985)
Democrats: Diane Feinstein (CA), two vacant seats
Republicans: Charles Grassley (IA), Jeff Sessions (AL)

House

Committee on Appropriations, Subcommittee on Labor, Health and Human Services, Education, and Related Agencies
Democrats: David Obey (WI) (Chair), Nita Lowey (NY), Rosa DeLauro (CT), Jesse Jackson Jr. (IL), Patrick Kennedy (RI), Lucille Roybal-Allard (CA), Barbara Lee (CA), Michael Honda (CA), Betty McCollum (MN), Tim Ryan (OH), James Moran (VA)
Republicans: Todd Tiahrt (KS) (Ranking Member), Dennis Rehberg (MT), Rodney Alexander (LA), Jo Bonner (AL), Tom Cole (OK), Jerry Lewis (CA - ex officio)

Committee on Appropriations, Subcommittee on Financial Services
Democrats: Jose Serrano (NY), Debbie Wasserman Schultz (FL), Rosa DeLauro (CT), Chet Edwards (TX), Allen Boyd (FL), Chaka Fattah (PA), Barbara Lee (CA), Adam Schiff (CA), David Obey (WI - ex officio)
Republicans: Jo Ann Emerson (MO) (Ranking Member), John Abney Culberson (TX), Mark Steven Kirk (IL), Ander Crenshaw (FL), Jerry Lewis (CA - ex officio)

Committee on Appropriations, Subcommittee on Commerce, Justice, Science and Related Agencies
Democrats: Alan Mollohan (WV) (Chair), Patrick Kennedy (RI), Chaka Fattah (PA), Adam Schiff (CA), Michael Honda (CA), C.A. Ruppersberger (MD), Peter Visclosky (IN), Jose Serrano (NY), David Obey (WI - ex officio)
Republicans: Frank Wolf (VA) (Ranking Member), John Abney Culberson (TX), Robert Aderholt (AL), Jo Bonner (AL), Jerry Lewis (CA - ex officio)

Committee on Energy and Commerce, Subcommittee on Health
Democrats: Frank Pallone (NJ) (Chair), John Dingell (MI), Bart Gordon (TN), Anna Eshoo (CA), Eliot Engel (NY), Gene Green (TX), Diana DeGette (CO), Lois Capps (CA), Jan Schakowsky (IL), Tammy Baldwin (WI), Mike Ross (AR), Anthony Weiner (NY), Jim Matheson (UT), Jane Harman (CA), Charles Gonzalez (TX), John Barrow (GA), Donna Christensen (VI), Kathy Castor (FL), John Sarbanes (MD), Christopher Murphy (CT), Zachary Space (OH), Betty Sutton (OH), Bruce Braley (IA), Henry Waxman (CA - ex officio)
Republicans: Nathan Deal (GA) (Ranking Member), Ralph Hall (TX), Ed Whitfield (KY), John Shimkus (IL), John Shadegg (AZ), Roy Blunt (MO), Steve Buyer (IN), Joseph Pitts (PA), Mike Rogers (MI), Sue Wilkins Myrick (NC), Tim Murphy (PA), Michael Burgess (TX), Marsha Blackburn (TN), Phil Gingrey (GA), Joe Barton (TX - ex officio)

Committee on Oversight and Government Reform, Subcommittee on Domestic Policy
Democrats: Dennis Kucinich (OH) (Chair), Elijah Cummings (MD), John Tierney (MA), Diane Watson (CA), Jim Cooper (TN), Patrick Kennedy (RI), Peter Welch (VT), Bill Foster (IL)
Republicans: Jim Jordan (OH) (Ranking Member), Mark Souder (IN), Dan Burton (IN), Michael Turner (OH), Jeff Fortenberry (NE), Aaron Schock (IL)


Index

Research Findings

Program Activities

Extramural Policy and Review Activities

Congressional Affairs

International Activities

Meetings and Conferences

Media and Education Activities

Planned Meetings

Publications

Staff Highlights

Grantee Honors



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