NSF Congressional Highlight
NSF's FY 2006 Budget Increases 3 Percent
November 22, 2005
On November 22, 2005, the President signed the Science, State, Justice, Commerce and Related Agencies Appropriations Act of 2006 (H.R. 2862) into law (P.L.109-108), yielding a three percent increase for the National Science Foundation (NSF). The agency's budget rebounds to $5,653.37 million--3.3 percent higher than the FY 2005 funding level and nearly one percent above the President's FY 2006 request level.
The law provides $4,387.52 million for the Research and Related Activities Account, an amount four percent above the FY 2005 appropriation and 1.2 percent above the President's request for FY 2006. The Education and Human Resources Account is provided $807 million, an increase of 9.5 percent over the FY 2006 request. The law provides $193 million for the Major Research Equipment and Facilities Construction Account, an amount 11 percent above the FY 2005 level and 22 percent below the President's request. The law also contains an across-the-board cut of 0.28 percent, which will reduce the NSF total by roughly $17 million. The aforementioned numbers do not reflect this rescission.
This budget cycle was the first in which NSF's appropriation was considered in the newly configured Science, State, Justice, Commerce and Related Agencies Appropriations Act. This bill is the principal source of financial resources to support the Departments of Justice and Commerce, including the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration; the National Aeronautics and Space Administration; NSF; and a number of independent agencies and commissions, including the Securities and Exchange Commission, the Small Business Administration, and the Federal Trade Commission.
The language from the NSF Section of P.L.109-108 follows.
NATIONAL SCIENCE FOUNDATION
RESEARCH AND RELATED ACTIVITIES
For necessary expenses in carrying out the National Science Foundation Act of 1950, as amended (42 U.S.C. 1861–1875), and the Act to establish a National Medal of Science (42 U.S.C. 1880–1881); services as authorized by 5 U.S.C. 3109; maintenance and operation of aircraft and purchase of flight services for research support; acquisition of aircraft; and authorized travel; $4,387,520,000, to remain available until September 30, 2007, of which not to exceed $425,000,000 shall remain available until expended for Polar research and operations support, and for reimbursement to other Federal agencies for operational and science support and logistical and other related activities for the United States Antarctic program: Provided, That from funds specified in the fiscal year 2006 budget request for icebreaking services, such sums shall be available for the procurement of polar icebreaking services: Provided further, That the National Science Foundation shall reimburse the Coast Guard according to the existing memorandum of agreement: Provided further, That receipts for scientific support services and materials furnished by the National Research Centers and other National Science Foundation supported research facilities may be credited to this appropriation: Provided further, That to the extent that the amount appropriated is less than the total amount authorized to be appropriated for included program activities, all amounts, including floors and ceilings, specified in the authorizing Act for those program activities or their subactivities shall be reduced proportionally: Provided further, That funds under this heading may be available for innovation inducement prizes.
MAJOR RESEARCH EQUIPMENT AND FACILITIES CONSTRUCTION
For necessary expenses for the acquisition, construction, commissioning, and upgrading of major research equipment, facilities, and other such capital assets pursuant to the National Science Foundation Act of 1950, as amended, including authorized travel, $193,350,000, to remain available until expended.
EDUCATION AND HUMAN RESOURCES
For necessary expenses in carrying out science and engineering education and human resources programs and activities pursuant to the National Science Foundation Act of 1950, as amended (42 U.S.C. 1861–1875), including services as authorized by 5 U.S.C. 3109, authorized travel, and rental of conference rooms in the District of Columbia, $807,000,000, to remain available until September 30, 2007: Provided, That to the extent that the amount of this appropriation is less than the total amount authorized to be appropriated for included program activities, all amounts, including floors and ceilings, specified in the authorizing Act for those program activities or their subactivities shall be reduced proportionally.
SALARIES AND EXPENSES
For salaries and expenses necessary in carrying out the National Science Foundation Act of 1950, as amended (42 U.S.C. H. R. 2862—30 1861–1875); services authorized by 5 U.S.C. 3109; hire of passenger motor vehicles; not to exceed $9,000 for official reception and representation expenses; uniforms or allowances therefor, as authorized by 5 U.S.C. 5901–5902; rental of conference rooms in the District of Columbia; and reimbursement of the General Services Administration for security guard services; $250,000,000: Provided, That contracts may be entered into under "Salaries and Expenses" in fiscal year 2006 for maintenance and operation of facilities, and for other services, to be provided during the next fiscal year.
OFFICE OF THE NATIONAL SCIENCE BOARD
For necessary expenses (including payment of salaries, authorized travel, hire of passenger motor vehicles, the rental of conference rooms in the District of Columbia, and the employment of experts and consultants under section 3109 of title 5, United States Code) involved in carrying out section 4 of the National Science Foundation Act of 1950 (42 U.S.C. 1863) and Public Law 86–209 (42 U.S.C. 1880 et seq.), $4,000,000: Provided, That not more than $9,000 shall be available for official reception and representation expenses.
OFFICE OF INSPECTOR GENERAL
For necessary expenses of the Office of Inspector General as authorized by the Inspector General Act of 1978, as amended, $11,500,000, to remain available until September 30, 2007. This title may be cited as the "Science Appropriations Act, 2006".