The Congressional Budget Office has completed a preliminary estimate of the effect on direct spending that would result from enacting S. 928, the James Zadroga 9/11 Health Compensation Reauthorization Act, as introduced on April 14, 2015. The bill would permanently extend spending authority for the World Trade Center (WTC) Health Program and the September 11th Victims Compensation Fund (VCF).
CBO estimates that enacting S. 928 would increase direct spending by between $8 billion and $11 billion over the 2016-2025 period. Additional spending would continue after 2025 for several years. This estimate reflects considerable uncertainty about the number of people that will seek compensation from the VCF.
S. 928 would:
Permanently extend the health program by providing annual appropriations beginning in fiscal year 2016 equal to the 2015 appropriation indexed to the percent increase in the medical component of the consumer price index for urban consumers;
Appropriate such sums as are necessary for the VCF program;
Allow claims for compensation under the VCF to be filed indefinitely; and
Add the WTC Health Program and the VCF to the list of accounts that are not subject to sequestration.