Deal salvages FDA staffing

WASHINGTON - The House of Representatives, led by Democrats John Dingell of Michigan and Richard Durbin of Illinois, has forced the Clinton administration to back down on its plans to cut FDA staff levels.

Durbin and Dingell induced Leon Panetta, director of the Office of Management and Budget, instead to agree to increase staff levels at the agency significantly, according to House aides and FDA officials familiar with the negotiations.