As previously stated, the lengthy struggle to enact the final FY 2003
appropriations bill has been followed, in some cases, by weeks of
calculations by federal agency budget officers trying to determine
their program numbers for this year. In order to make the numbers
add up, adjustments were made by the appropriators in different parts
of the 3,000+ page conference report. This FYI presents the "final"
budget numbers for major programs within the National Science
Foundation. These numbers are still subject to minor adjustments.
Selections from the final conference report language in House Report
108-010 are provided.
First the numbers:
The TOTAL NSF Budget increases $501.4 million, or 10.4%, from
$4,808.5 million in FY 2002 to $5,310.0 million in the current fiscal
The RESEARCH AND RELATED ACTIVITIES budget increases $457.8 million,
or 12.7%, from $3,598.6 million in FY 2002 to $4,056.5 million in the
current fiscal year.
The following budgets are within the Research and Related Activities
The MATHEMATICAL AND PHYSICAL SCIENCES budget increases $114.0
million, or 12.4%, from $920.5 million in FY 2002 to $1,034.4 million
in the current fiscal year.
The GEOSCIENCES budget increases $75.3 million, or 12.3%, from $609.5
million in FY 2002 to $684.7 million in the current fiscal year.
The ENGINEERING budget increases $58.3 million, or 12.3%, from $472.3
million in FY 2002 to $530.6 million in the current fiscal year.
The U.S. POLAR RESEARCH PROGRAMS budget increases $21.4 million, or
7.2%, from $297.8 million in FY 2002 to $319.2 million in the current
In other sections of the budget:
The MAJOR RESEARCH EQUIPMENT AND FACILITIES budget increases $9.7
million, or 7.0%, from $138.8 million in FY 2002 to $148.5 million in
the current fiscal year.
The EDUCATION AND HUMAN RESOURCES budget increases $8.9 million, or
1.0%, from $894.3 million in FY 2002 to $903.2 million in the current
Conference report language regarding the overall budget for the National
Science Foundation states: "In allocating this increased funding
to the directorates, NSF is expected to give a high priority to increasing
research opportunities for investigator initiated research in the core
scientific disciplines. In addition, NSF is urged to use the growth
in its resources to make a marked and substantial increase in the average
award, as well as increase the number of awards being made with a particular
effort to include those individuals and institutions not well represented
in the Nation's research enterprise."
The following selections from the conference report pertain to
physics-related programs. All of the amounts specified are subject
to a reduction of 0.65%.
MATHEMATICAL AND PHYSICAL SCIENCES: The conference report states: "$1,041,165,000
for Mathematical and Physical Sciences. Of this amount, $179,617,000
is for Mathematics programs and not less than $222,169,000 is for Physical
Science programs. The conferees further agree that adequate resources
be provided in support of the National High Magnetic Field Laboratory,
the Cyclotron and Synchrotron Radiation Facilities, and other such important
research facilities. The Foundation is directed to provide, by August
31, 2003, a report which documents what has been accomplished as a result
of the growth in mathematics research funding.
"For Astronomical Sciences within the MPS Directorate, $4,000,000
is provided for the Telescope Systems Instrumentation Program (TSIP),
$6,000,000 is for the National Radio Astronomy Observatory program,
$4,200,000 is for the National Optical Astronomy Observatories, and
$2,000,000 is for the National Optical Astronomy and Ionosphere Center.
In addition, the conferees agree that NSF should provide adequate support
for preparatory work for the Giant Segmented Mirror Telescope (GSMT)."
GEOSCIENCES: The conference report provides $689.2 million, and states:
" The Foundation is expected to provide adequate funding to
augment support for the national user facilities within this directorate
as well as to move forward on the integrated ocean drilling program."
U.S. POLAR RESEARCH PROGRAMS: The conference report provides $252.3
million, and states: "The conferees agree that OPP [Office of
Polar Programs] should report at the earliest practicable time on the
necessary work and costs associated with the repair, upgrading, and
replacement of NSF's research and support facilities in Antarctica.
Upon completion of this report, funds available through this and other
appropriations may be used for planning, design, pre-construction, and
construction activities as identified in the report. In addition, the
conferees agree that with the funds provided, OPP may execute necessary
contractual arrangements in preparation for the Foundation's plan for
mechanical traverse between McMurdo Station and Amundson-Scott South
A forthcoming FYI will review the conference report language
regarding Education and Human Resources. The conference report also
had considerable language regarding management issues and the role of
the National Science Foundation.