Publication Date: September 2006
Publisher(s): Library of Congress. Congressional Research Service
Many potential biological terrorism agents lack available countermeasures. President Bush proposed Project BioShield to address this need. The 108th Congress considered this proposal in S. 15, S. 1504, and H.R. 2122. President Bush signed S. 15 into law on July 21, 2004 (The Project BioShield Act of 2004, P.L. 108-276). The main provisions of this law include (1) relaxing procedures for bioterrorism-related procurement, hiring, and awarding of research grants; (2) guaranteeing a federal government market for new biomedical countermeasures; and (3) permitting emergency use of unapproved countermeasures. Project BioShield countermeasure procurement is funded by the Department of Homeland Security Appropriations Act, 2004 (P.L. 10890) which advance-appropriated $5.593 billion for FY2004-FY2013. Additional measures to encourage countermeasure development are being considered by the 109th Congress in S. 3 (Gregg), S. 975 (Lieberman), S. 1873 (Burr), S. 1880 (Kennedy), S. 2564 (Burr), and H.R. 5533 (Rogers). This report will be updated in response to legislative developments.