Hudson Reintroduces Amendment to Boost Vaccines, Prioritize Teachers
WASHINGTON, D.C. – U.S. Representative Richard Hudson (NC-08) introduced an amendment today to provide an additional $2 billion for vaccines in the Concurrent Resolution on the Budget for Fiscal Year 2021. Rep. Hudson's amendment would also dedicate $1 billion of this funding to make vaccines available to teachers to help schools reopen as soon as possible.
Rep. Hudson first introduced this amendment in the Energy and Commerce Committee during a markup of the bill on Feb. 11. While Democrats on the Committee rejected the amendment at that time, Rep. Hudson introduced the amendment today before the Rules Committee which provides another opportunity to get this measure included in the final bill.
"I am dedicated to addressing real needs from this COVID-19 pandemic including getting vaccines to communities that need them and reopening our schools," said Rep. Hudson. "Unfortunately, the current 'COVID relief' bill includes $1 trillion in unrelated items while only dedicating 1 percent of funding to vaccines and 9 percent of overall funding to combating the virus. Students, parents and teachers deserve better, which is why I have introduced this amendment to boost vaccine deployment and prioritize our schools."
Currently, just roughly 1 percent of the $1.9 trillion legislation Democrats have labeled a 'COVID-19 relief bill' goes toward vaccines. Overall, just 9 percent of the bill is for combating the virus. For schools, two-thirds of included funding would not be spent until 2023 or later, failing to address the immediate need to support reopening. Rep. Hudson has been critical of the legislation for these reasons. However if accepted, his amendment would ensure the bill not only helps provide more vaccines to communities and people that need them, but also prioritizes teachers.