Congress faces a December 11, 2020 deadline to enact legislation to keep the federal government operating.
On November 10, 2020, the Senate Committee on Appropriations released all twelve of its FY 2021 funding measures and the FY 2021 Subcommittee allocations. The bill text and explanatory statements released are funding measures for the Appropriations Subcommittees on Agriculture, Rural Development, FDA, and Related Agencies; Commerce, Justice, Science, and Related Agencies; Defense; Energy and Water Development; Financial Services and General Government; Homeland Security; Interior, Environment, and Related Agencies; Labor, Health and Human Services, Education, and Related Agencies; Legislative Branch; Military Construction, Veterans Affairs, and Related Agencies; State, Foreign Operations, and Related Programs; and Transportation, Housing and Urban Development, and Related Agencies. The bill for Interior, Environment, and Related Agencies would provide $9.085 billion for EPA, including $64.5 million for EPA to continue to take action on PFAS, including addressing contamination, conducting research, and undertaking needed regulatory actions. The bill includes language that will enable EPA to collect and spend fees to conduct additional chemical reviews, consistent with the Lautenberg Act. According to the explanatory statement, those fees are expected to be $27 million per year once the program is fully implemented. The Congressional Budget Office estimates that in FY 2021, fee collections will total $5 million. The explanatory statement notes that the appropriations bill includes language intended to ensure that the new fee collections supplement, not supplant, appropriated resources for these activities. The explanatory statement also directs the EPA Administrator to involve FDA in research regarding the environment, health, and safety of nanomaterials (nanoEHS), including participation in EPA-funded research.