NBAF secures $75 million in 2013 budget

The proposed National Bio and Agro-Defense Facility in Manhattan, Kansas, overcame a major obstacle on Wednesday when $75 million in funding for it was included in a proposed 2013 budget by the House of Representatives.

The facility now has a total federal funding commitment of $165 million. The House Appropriations Subcommittee on Homeland Security released a Homeland Security Appropriations bill on Wednesday for fiscal year 2013. The bill included $75 million in construction funding in the proposed budget, LJ World reports.

"I am pleased that the House Appropriations Committee has once again recognized the dire need for NBAF in our efforts to fulfill this responsibility to the American people," Rep. Lynn Jenkins (R-Kan.) said, according to LJ World.

Two separate committees are currently evaluating the plans for the facility. The National Research Council held teleconferences last week to assess the threats of animal diseases to the United States and to determine what would be needed in a new laboratory, KCUR reports.

The other committee is evaluating an updated risk assessment of the site for the NBAF from the Department of Homeland Security because the new facility would be able to study larger animals than many other facilities, but concerns of possible redundancies in the diseases studied have been raised.