Combating Autism Reauthorization Act of 2014 Introduced in the House

Bill includes five year continued authorization for funding LEND and DBP training programs

May 12, 2014

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On Friday, Rep. Chris Smith (R-NJ) and Mike Doyle (D-PA) introduced a bill to reauthorize the Combating Autism Act (H.R. 4631) for five years, including continued authorization for funding of the MCHB-administered Leadership Education in Neurodevelopmental and related Disabilities (LEND) and Developmental Behavioral Pediatrics (DBP) training programs. The bill has 35 bipartisan co-sponsors.

New in the Bill

The bill adds a requirement for the U.S. General Accounting Office (GAO) to complete a study on the demographics and needs of individuals with ASD making the transition from school-based support system to adulthood. The GAO includes a list of stakeholders to be surveyed for the report that includes University Centers for Excellence in Developmental Disabilities.

The bill also makes changes to the Interagency Autism Coordinating Committee (IACC), including permitting the HHS Secretary to oversee the implementation of the strategic plan and ensure that research and activities of HHS are not unnecessarily duplicative.

AUCD is pleased that the bill has strong bipartisan support; however, the bill does not include authorization for additional services or change the title of the law, as recommended by AUCD. A Senate bill is expected to be introduced soon.