Anne Jordan was a contributing editor to GOVERNING.E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org
Just read a Washington Post editorial about a casualty in the HHS appropriations bill: ER One. In Congress's efforts to rid the bill of earmarks, the $25 million slated to continue development of the country's first "all-risks ready" emergency department has been eliminated.
This fall, Governing's special report on homeland security wrote about this state-of-the-art facility being designed by the Washington Hospital Center. The public-private partnership has a dual purpose: to be capable of handling a massive number of civilian victims in the event of a terrorist attack, natural disaster or epidemic in the national capital area, as well as to serve as a model and resource for trauma centers in other cities.
The D.C area's status as a high-risk target and the project's broad mission, the Post notes, are why funding for ER One "was exempted from the normal pork-barrel form of distribution" in the president's budget and earlier versions of the HHS budget bill.
So what happened? Congress owes the country an explanation or a change of heart--stat!
Written and compiled by staff writers and editors, GOVERNING View is an on-the-ground, and sometimes behind-the-scenes, look at the topics we're covering in print and online. From notes on what's up in statehouses, county courthouses and city halls, to encounters with people, places and things, GOVERNING View is a window into the side of state and local government you don't always see.