House VA/HUD appropriators marked up their FY 2002 funding bill on
July 10. Although the complete bill text and report language are not
yet available, some unofficial information has been reported on funding
numbers for NSF and NASA. FYI
#87 provided details on what is known about the appropriations numbers
for NSF; below is information on the NASA appropriations. Because NASA
reorganized many of its accounts in the FY 2002 budget request, direct
comparisons with FY 2001 funding levels are difficult.
The subcommittee bill would provide total NASA funding of
$14,926.4 million. This is an increase of $641 million (4.5 percent)
over the FY 2001 budget of $14,285.3 million, and an increase of $415
million (2.9 percent) over President Bush's request of $14,511.4 million.
The Office of Space Science would receive $2,759.4 million.
This is a reduction of $27 million (1.0 percent) from the request
of $2,786.4 million. FY 2001 funding was $2,321.0 million, but cannot
be directly compared to the FY 2002 numbers due to the reorganization
of accounts. Reductions from the request include the Next Generation
Space Telescope (reduction of $20 million), New Millennium program
(reduction of $10 million), and STEREO program (reduction of $10 million).
The subcommittee's recommendation for the Office of Earth Sciences
was not yet available. Reports indicate that EOS follow-on programs
would be reduced by $31.0 million from the request, although still
$44.6 million above FY 2001 funding. The FY 2001 appropriation for
the Office of Earth Sciences was $1,484.6 million.
The subcommittee bill would provide $685.9 million for the Office
of Biological and Physical Research. This reflects an increase
of $325.0 million, almost doubling the request of $360.9 million.
Part of this increase is due to moving space station research funding
into the Office of Biological and Physical Research. FY 2001 funding
for this office was $312.9 million, but again, direct comparisons
cannot be made.
The total appropriation for Human Space Flight is $7,322.4
million, an increase over both the request and current-year funding.
The International Space Station would receive $1,831.3 million.
An increase of $275 million over the request would be provided for
development of a Crew Return Vehicle.
The subcommittee would provide $187.8 million for academic programs,
an increase of $34.1 million over the request.
The subcommittee also reiterated concerns regarding the International
Traffic in Arms Regulations (ITAR), noting that the shift in responsibility
for satellite technology export licensing from the Commerce to the State
Department has resulted in "university-based fundamental science and
engineering research, widely disseminated and unclassified, [becoming]
subject to overly restrictive and inconsistent ITAR direction.... The
Committee understands that, while OSTP and NASA have proposed language
to the State Department, no clarification has yet been issued." An immediate
report clarifying the issue is requested.