A measure to combat agriterrorism has been included in the biosecurity bill recently introduced by Congress, introduced by Sens. Ted Kennedy (D-Mass.) and Bill Frist (R-Tenn.).

Facilities updates account for $180 million, to be spent at the National Animal Disease Center in Iowa and the Plum Island Animal Disease Laboratory near New York. An additional $190 million will fund research into vaccine development, antidotes and disease resistance. Training and implementation of a rapid response strategy would receive $30 million.

A second bill before the House, sponsored by Rep. Frank Lucas (R-Okla.) calls for closer monitoring of food imports, additional research on plant and animal diseases, and improved coordination among universities and law enforcement.

Legislative committees have yet to review either bill, and neither will likely be considered until early in 2002.

United Press International