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Second Opinion

Learn about policy issues important to medical schools and teaching hospitals, with Executive Vice President Atul Grover, M.D., Ph.D.

Washington Highlights

House Committee Approves NSF Spending Bill

April 27, 2012—The House Appropriations Committee April 26 approved by voice vote the draft FY 2013 Commerce, Justice, Science (CJS) Appropriations bill. According to the draft report, the committee calls for $7.4 billion for the National Science Foundation (NSF), a $340 million (4.8 percent) increase over the FY 2012-enacted level. The committee considered several amendments unrelated to NSF, but by voice vote passed one sponsored by Rep. Jeff Flake (R-Ariz.) to add report language encouraging the retention of graduate level science and technology students in the U.S. to maintain and encourage economic competitiveness.

In addition to NSF, the bill includes a total of $51.1 billion in funding for the Department of Commerce, the Department of Justice, the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA), and other related agencies. In an April 26 press release, Committee Chair Hal Rodgers (R-Ky.) said the bill makes “reasonable funding decisions” to “programs which maintain the competitiveness of our businesses and industries, and scientific research to ensure America leads the world in innovation.”

Ranking Member Norm Dicks (D-Wash.) expressed mixed feelings about provisions in the bill, but said it provides “healthy” funding levels for the NSF. Rep. Dicks voiced his concern that the House-passed budget resolution (H.Con.Res. 112) limits the subcommittee’s funding level by cutting discretionary spending below the $1.047 trillion discretionary allocation established in  the Budget Control Act (BCA, P.L. 112-25) [see Washington Highlights, March 30]. He said, “while the level of funding in this bill may not be as low as a strict proportional reduction based on the Ryan budget, it is nevertheless not adequate to meet the needs in this area. In comparison, the Senate Appropriations Committee approved its CJS bill last week with tremendous bipartisan support, and it is $731 million higher than the House allocation.”

The House bill reportedly is expected to go to the House floor May 8. Meanwhile, the Senate Appropriations Committee approved its CJS appropriations bill April 19 [see Washington Highlights, April 20], but the bill has not been scheduled for floor action.

Contact:

Alexandra Khalife
Legislative Analyst
Telephone: 202-828-0418
Email: akhalife@aamc.org

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Washington Highlights, a weekly electronic newsletter, features brief updates on the latest legislative and regulatory activities affecting medical schools and teaching hospitals.


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Jason Kleinman
Sr. Legislative Analyst, Govt. Relations
Telephone: 202-903-0806
Email: jkleinman@aamc.org