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Policy Corner: NIH Grant Funding Update

On October 11th, NIH issued a notice announcing that “non-competing research grant awards will be funded below the level indicated in the most recent Notice of Award (generally up to 90 percent of the previously committed level) until the fiscal year (FY) 2013 appropriations are enacted.” The notice also states that “upward adjustments to awarded levels will be considered” after the FY 2013 funding levels have been resolved. The notice is available here.

Every year Congress must pass appropriations bills by October 1 to keep the federal government funded and running. However, it has become common practice to miss the October 1 deadline. This forces Congress to pass a Continuing Resolution which allows the federal government to keep running, but at a bare-bones minimum. This notice of reducing grants is consistent with NIH’s practice that was in effect during the Continuing Resolutions between FY 2006 and FY 2012.

It is expected that Congress will pass the remaining appropriations bills sometime after the elections during the "lame-duck" session of Congress. However, if an agreement on the appropriations bills cannot be reached during the "lame-duck" session, it will be up to the new Congress to pass the bills sometime next year. The current Continuing Resolution expires on March 27, 2013. more

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