Final FY 2001 Appropriations Bills Sent to White House On Friday, the 106th Congress wrapped its remaining appropriations bills into a consolidated package, sent it to President Clinton, and adjourned. This final appropriations package incorporates the FY 2001 Labor-HHS-Education, Commerce- Justice-State, Treasury-Postal, and Legislative Branch appropriations legislation.
This package of several bills provides FY 2001 funding for the Department of Commerce's National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) and the Department of Education's Eisenhower professional development state grants program for teachers, as well as many other federal departments and agencies that until now have been funded under short-term continuing resolutions, generally at their FY 2000 budget levels. The final package also includes a pro rata rescission, or across-the-board cut, of 0.22 percent to all appropriations - including those already enacted into law - except those in the Labor-HHS-Education bill and some military personnel and construction funding. This means that final FY 2001 funding for NSF, NASA, DOE, and DOD S&T programs as previously reported by FYI will be cut by 0.22 percent.
Even with this reduction, R&D across the federal budget increased substantially over FY 2000 levels and over the Clinton Administration's request, topping $90.0 billion for the first time. Budgets for NSF, NASA, DOE's Office of Science, and DOD S&T all increased over last year. As reported below, NIST funding would decrease, in part due to a planned reduction in construction funding.
EISENHOWER PROFESSIONAL DEVELOPMENT PROGRAM: This Department of Education program, funded within the Labor-HHS-Education bill, is not affected by the 0.22 percent reduction. The Eisenhower program, which provides federal funding for teacher professional development, will be funded at $485.0 million for FY 2001. This is a $150.0 million, or 44.8%, increase over FY 2000 funding of $335.0 million. It is not directly comparable to the Administration's request, which rolled the Eisenhower program into a larger "Teaching to High Standards" initiative. Last year, $250.0 million of the Eisenhower funding was set aside for professional development in science and math. With such a substantial increase for FY 2001, there is a good chance that the science and math set-aside will also increase.
NIST: It is not quite clear yet what the final numbers are for NIST. The consolidated appropriations package apparently enacts a previously vetoed conference report, H. Report 106-1005, for Commerce-Justice-State funding, but some additions and changes are made within other bill language that is not available yet. Assuming the previous report language for NIST remains valid, and BEFORE APPLYING THE 0.22 PERCENT CUT, the FY 2001 funding levels for NIST programs would be as follows:
Total NIST funding: $598.3 million; Scientific and Technical Research and Services: $312.6 million; Manufacturing Extension Partnership: $105.1 million; Advanced Technology Program: $145.7 million; Construction of Research Facilities: $34.9 million.
AFTER TAKING AN ACROSS-THE-BOARD REDUCTION OF 0.22 PERCENT, the funding levels would be:
NIST TOTAL: $597.0 million (6.3% less than FY 2000; 16.3% less than requested)
SCIENTIFIC AND TECHNICAL RESEARCH AND SERVICES: $311.9 million (10.2% over FY 2000; 7.6% less than requested)
MANUFACTURING EXTENSION PARTNERSHIP: $104.9 million (0.1% over FY 2000; 8.1% less than requested)
ADVANCED TECHNOLOGY PROGRAM: $145.4 million (2.0% over FY 2000; 17.2% less than requested)
CONSTRUCTION: $34.8 million (reduced 67.4% from FY 2000 because construction of the Advanced Measurement Laboratory is now fully funded; 3.1% less than requested)
Within the NIST budget, Congress provides no funding for the Institute for Information Infrastructure, for which the Administration requested $50.0 million.
President Clinton is expected to sign these final FY 2001 appropriations bills into law either today or tomorrow.
Audrey T. Leath