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Government Shutdown Averted; Academy Urges Congress to Take Action by Early 2024 Deadlines

November 16, 2023 – The 118th U.S. Congress averted a government shutdown and President Biden is expected to sign a bipartisan continuing resolution that allows four federal agencies to operate through January 19, 2024, and the rest, including the Department of Health and Human Services, through February 2, 2024. The Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics urges Congress to take immediate action to pass bipartisan legislation that includes adequate funding for federal programs and services that aim to improve nutrition security, ensure a safe food supply and improve health.

The continuing resolution is a step in the right direction; however, more work remains to ensure nutrition programs and services are fully funded in the budget. While the continuing resolution keeps programs and services funded at current levels, they remain at risk for cuts as lawmakers negotiate the final bills. If an agreement on the appropriations package is not met by the January 19 and February 2 expiration dates, the threat of a government shutdown will once again return.
According to the U.S. Department of Agriculture, WIC beneficiaries would experience the impact of a shutdown almost immediately at the federal level. If a shutdown continues longer than a few weeks, other programs including SNAP, senior adult programs and school meals might not be able to continue to operate as usual. When government funds for programs are exhausted, programs would depend on state and local funds to the extent they are available or face a decision to discontinue.

The Academy calls on Congress to approve appropriations legislation before the end of the continuing resolution to provide funding for all government operations, including agencies that deliver essential food, nutrition and health services, and safeguard the public from threats to food safety.

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