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DeWine Sponsored Amendments to Increase Health, Fire Safety, Advanced Technology and Aeronautics Funding Now in Budget

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U.S. Senator Mike DeWine (R-OH) is pleased that five of his amendments were added to the FY2007 Budget Resolution, prior to its passage late last night. The amendments called for increased funding in three separate areas including, children's healthcare, fire safety, Advanced Technology Program and NASA aeronautics program funding which affects NASA Glenn in Northeast Ohio.

Children's Hospital Graduate Medical Education Senator DeWine offered an amendment last night cosponsored by Senators Ted Kennedy (D-MA), Patty Murray (D-WA), and Jim Talent (R-MO), to restore funding for Children's Hospital Graduate Medical Education to its fiscal year 2006 levels. This would be an increase of $198 million over the President's budget request.

"Funding for Children's GME is vital," said Senator DeWine, a member of the Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions Committee. "It provides equitable graduate medical education for our Nation's independent children's teaching hospitals. Thanks to this funding, children's teaching hospitals continue to train 30 percent of all pediatricians, half of all pediatric sub-specialists and the majority of pediatric researchers. This program is a sound investment in children's health, and I am pleased that my colleagues in the Senate have accepted it."

Child Survival and Maternal Health Program Senator DeWine offered another amendment last night, along with Senator Patrick Leahy (D-VT), to increase the budget for Child Survival and Maternal Health Program to $400 million. President Bush's request of $323 million is a cut of $37 million from FY06 enacted levels.

"These precious resources help reduce the number of deaths in children under the age of five and save the lives of women during childbirth," said Senator DeWine. "According to the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID), approximately 7 million of the nearly 11 million annual child deaths could be prevented by the types of interventions covered by these programs - interventions that include immunization, pneumonia and diarrhea prevention and treatment, oral rehydration, polio eradication, micronutrient deficiencies, safe birthing, and antenatal care. These activities are simple and inexpensive ways to save thousands of lives. Every dollar has a tremendous impact."

NASA Aeronautics Program The Senate accepted an amendment offered by Senator DeWine, Senators John Warner (R-VA), George Voinovich (R-OH), and George Allen (R-VA) to provide $179 million increase in NASA aeronautics funding for fiscal year 2007. With this amendment, NASA aeronautics programs would now receive $903 million for FY07, equivalent to the enacted level of funding for FY06. The President's budget request sought $724 million for the aeronautics program.

"My amendment would keep aeronautics programs going strong in fiscal year 2007, while also providing an offset in order to avoid breaking the budget. For decades, NASA has conducted a wide array of aeronautics research programs that have helped ensure our economic and military security and revolutionize the way we travel. My amendment will help make certain that progress continues for many years to come," added Senator DeWine.

Senator DeWine has worked to strengthen the NASA Glenn Research Center in Cleveland by supporting key programs in areas including aeronautics, in-space propulsion, advanced power systems, communications, and space medicine. Since 2000, he has served as the Senate lead in securing over $126 million in directed spending to NASA Glenn and its private sector and academic partners through his seat on the Senate Appropriations Committee. Last year, Senator DeWine sponsored a package of amendments to the NASA Authorization Act, which was signed into law in December, that protect aeronautics programs, increase NASA's focus on power and propulsion, and prohibit layoffs at NASA field centers until a comprehensive workforce strategy is formulated.

Fire Safety Senator DeWine offered an amendment last night with Senator Christopher Dodd (D-CT) to establish a reserve fund in the budget that would allow appropriators to increase Firefighter Investment and Response Enhancement (FIRE) Act and Staffing for Adequate Fire and Emergency Response (SAFER) Grant funding over the President's allotment as long as it remains budget neutral. This amendment passed by a voice vote. Senator DeWine was also an original cosponsor of an amendment by Senator Susan Collins (R-ME) that would increase first responder programs like the FIRE Act to fiscal year 2006 levels. This would be an increase of $252 million. The amendment passed by a voice vote. "This money buys the equipment and training that our firefighters need to protect our families, homes and businesses from the devastating effects of fire. I am pleased that my colleagues recognized this urgent need and voted to support these amendments. I look forward to working with our nation's firefighters and other first responders to secure more of these vital funds," said Senator DeWine, Co-Chair of the Congressional Fire Caucus.

Advanced Technology Program Senator DeWine offered an amendment last night along with Senator Carl Levin (D-MI) that would provide $140 million to the Advanced Technology Program (ATP) to support cost-shared industry-led research and development of cutting-edge high risk technology with broad commercial potential and societal benefits. The amendment was accepted into the Budget Resolution.

"The ATP is a very modest program with a proven track record," said Senator DeWine. "The ATP promotes the development of new, innovative products that are made and developed in the United States, helping American companies compete against their foreign competitors and contribute to the growth of the U.S. economy. The ATP is funding research ranging from cancer vaccines to high-tech flexible displays to composite materials. These are the kinds of ground breaking technologies that provide the United States with a competitive advantage. I am pleased that my colleagues in the Senate accepted it as part of the budget."

The Budget Resolution now goes to the House for consideration.

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