Program and facilities funding for the U.S. Geological Survey
would decline 5.1% under the FY 2003 budget request that the Bush
Administration has sent to Congress. Few program
budgets would increase under this proposal, with the majority
slated for cuts or level funding. In addition, a USGS program
would be transferred to the National Science Foundation.
A change in how retirement and health benefits would be
charged requires an adjustment in the USGS "bottom line."
After accounting for this change in both the current year and
in the FY 2003 request, the USGS budget would decline 5.1%, or
$46.7 million, from $914.0 million to $867.3 million.
(Including these benefits results in a decline of 4.8%.)
In describing the request, USGS Director Charles Groat stated,
"We will continue our emphasis on providing sound science on
public lands in support of other Interior bureaus, enabling
them to more effectively and efficiently fulfill their
resource management and protection responsibilities. Our
broad range of expertise in mapping, geology, hydrology and
biology is proving to be an important part of the science
foundation needed by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service,
Bureau of Land Management and National Park Service to address
complex resource management issues on lands they manage."
The survey's budget has six components. Funding would decline
for each of them under the administration's request, as
Mapping, Remote Sensing, and Geographic Investigations: Down
3.0%, or $4.0 million, from $133.3 million to $129.3 million.
Geologic Hazards, Resources, and Processes: Down 3.5%, or $8.2
million, from $232.8 million to $224.7 million.
Water Resources Investigations: Down 13.6%, or $28.0 million,
from $205.8 million to $177.8 million. The Toxic Substances
Hydrology Program, which now receives $13.9 million, would be
transferred to the National Science Foundation to "initiate a
competitive-grants process to address water-quality issues."
The NSF budget includes $10.0 million for this program, a cut
of 28.1%. The National Water-Quality Assessment Program would
be cut by $5.8 million, which USGS states "reflects a plan to
secure funding from partners and customers to maintain NAWQA's
current schedule and scope."
Biological Research: Down 3.6%, or $5.9 million, from $166.4
million to $160.5 million.
Science Support: Down 0.2%, or $0.151 million, from $86.3
million to $86.1 million.
Facilities: Down 0.5%, or $0.470 million, from $89.4 million
to $89.0 million.
A USGS brief identifies five new science activities for FY
2003: Energy Resource Assessments, Restoration of the
Everglades, Digital Base Mapping, Environment and Human
Health, and Geographic Information Systems.