Senate Sends to President $1.5B Bill for VA Health Programs
The Senate on Friday voted 99-1 to approve the fiscal year 2006 Interior-Environment appropriations bill (HR 2361), which includes $1.5 billion in supplemental funds for Department of Veterans Affairs health care programs, the Washington Post reports (Babington/Blum, Washington Post, 7/30).
House and Senate negotiators last week agreed to add $1.5 billion to the legislation for VA health care programs (Taylor, AP/San Francisco Chronicle, 7/29). The House on Thursday voted 410-10 to approve the FY 2006 conference report. VA would use the funds to address a budget deficit in FY 2005 and help address an expected deficit of at least $2.6 billion in FY 2006. The bill now moves to President Bush (California Healthline, 7/29).