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NSF Congressional Highlight
Senate Appropriators Recommend Three Percent Increase for NSF

September 22, 2004

U.S. Capitol image

On Tuesday, September 21, 2004, the Senate Appropriations Committee marked-up its FY 05 VA, HUD and Independent Agencies Appropriations bill. The bill provided NSF with $5.74 billion, $167 million (3%) over the FY 04 appropriated level, and $278 million (5%) over the House Committee approved levels.

The Research and Related Activities (R&RA) account increased from $4.25 to $4.4 billion, a $150 million (3.6%) increase. Each research directorate received an increase over FY 04 funding levels. Specifically, the bill funded the Plant Genome Research Program at $5.5 million above the FY 05 budget request, increasing total funding for the program to $95 million. The Committee commended the results of NSF's Information Technology Research (ITR) Program and increased funding $12 million over the FY 05 request level. The Committee fully supported the FY 05 funding request of $305 million for nanotechnology, and supported NSF's efforts to develop new science and technology centers.

The Education and Human Resources (EHR) account is funded at $929.2 million, a $9.8 million (1%) decrease over FY 04 appropriated levels. The Committee increased funding above the requested levels for the Experimental Program to Stimulate Competitive Research (EPSCoR) program (+$11 million to $95 million), the undergraduate "tech talent" expansion program (+$11.1 million to $26.1 million), the Advanced Technological Education (ATE) program (+$7.8 million to $46 million), the Informal Science Education (+$15 million to $53.2 million), the Centers of Research Excellence in Science and Technology (CREST) program (+$10 million to $20.88 million), the Louis Stokes Alliance for Minority Participation (+$2 million to $36.3 million), and the Historically-Black Colleges and Universities Undergraduate Program (+$7 million to $27 million).

In the Major Research Equipment and Facilities Construction (MREFC) account, the Committee provided the requested level of funding for the Atacama Large Millimeter Array, EarthScope, and the IceCube Neutrino Observatory. The Committee did not fund new starts "due to budgetary constraints."

The NSF's Salaries and Expenses account is funded at $269 million, a $50.3 million (23%) increase over the FY 04 appropriated level, to help meet the Foundation's staffing and computational infrastructure needs. The National Science Board is provided $4 million, up $120,000 from last year. The Office of the Inspector General is funded at $10.11 million, $170,000 over the current level.

As in the House mark-up, members noted the difficulty in meeting the fiscal needs of the various agencies given the small allocation in which they had to work. Chairman Bond noted that NSF's increase was not what he had hoped for and was far short of the funding path agreed to in the NSF Authorization Act. The bill language states, "The Committee continues to be supportive of the efforts achieved in the NSF Authorization Act of 2002 (Public Law 107-368) and the pursuit of a doubling path for NSF funding." and, "...will continue to pursue these efforts in the future."

SUMMARY OF FY 2005 SENATE APPROPRIATION MARK
NSF FUNDING BY APPROPRIATION
(Dollars in Thousands)

 

FY04
Estimate

FY 05
Request

FY 05
Mark

Change from FY 04
Estimate

$               %

Research & Related Activities

$4,251.36

$4,452.31

$4,402.32

$150.96

3.6%

divider line

Education and Human Resources

938.98

771.36

929.15

-9.83

-1.0%

divider line

Major Research Equipment and Facilities Construction

154.97

213.27

130.42

-24.55

-15.8%

divider line

Salaries and Expenses

218.70

294.00

269.00

50.30

23.0%

divider line

National Science Board

3.88

3.95

4.00

0.12

3.1%

divider line

Office of Inspector General

9.94

10.11

10.11

0.00

0.0%

divider line

TOTAL, NSF

$5,577.83

$5,745.00

$5,745.00

$167.00

3.0%

divider line

   Totals may not add due to rounding.

See also:

 

 

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