CFSO Update on Recently Signed Infrastructure Bill

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Source: C. Ken Williams, MS, JD, AAFS Vice President

The focus of the Consortium of Forensic Science Organization (CFSO) is specifically on Forensic Science. Significant legislation sometimes moves in Congress, such as H.R. 3684, the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act, that are not specifically a forensic science focus. There are perhaps things in this bill that may benefit specific Forensic Science Service Providers (FSSPs) or Forensic Science Medical Providers (FSMPs) or state, county, or local providers or practitioners. The CFSO would appreciate any feedback if you are able to utilize any of this funding so they can share that information with the other members and also with Congress.

This bill has passed both the House and Senate and was signed by President Biden on November 15, 2021. The legislation is intended to upgrade the nation’s physical infrastructure over the next five years. In short, this legislation provides funding to modernize and repair bridges, roads, transit, energy, and internet connectivity. A Section-by-Section is available HERE for your review, and a link to the actual legislation is HERE.

As the press reported, the progressive arm of the Majority did not want this bill to move without the current reconciliation bill (“Build Back America”).  The “Build Back America” bill is more of a human infrastructure bill and is more controversial, based on its level of spending and the programs it funds. In the end, they were separated.

Finally, negotiations continue between the House and Senate on a path forward to a FY22 budget. The Minority has rejected an offer from the Majority to add $25b to the Defense Budget and, as a result, it is very likely that another Continuing Resolution (CR) will be passed since the current CR expires on December 3.