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Chairwoman Mikulski Continues Critical Investments in James Webb Space Telescope

Press Release From: Sen. Mikulski
Posted: Friday, November 18, 2011

image WASHINGTON - U.S. Senator Barbara A. Mikulski (D-Md.), Chairwoman of the Senate Appropriations Subcommittee on Commerce, Justice and Science (CJS), today announced final Congressional approval of $530 million in funding for the James Webb Space Telescope. Chairwoman Mikulski has championed funding for the James Webb Space Telescope, which will advance scientific discovery around the world and sustain jobs in Maryland and across the country.

"I believe in the science and innovation that have made America a world leader in discovery. There is no other mission planned either by NASA or any other space agency that can achieve the scientific goals of the James Webb Space Telescope," Chairwoman Mikulski said. "In Maryland, science is jobs. Scientific innovation creates jobs and economic growth through innovative products and new businesses. The James Webb Space Telescope will keep America in the lead for science and technology and inspire students to learn science, technology, engineering and math to become the scientists, inventors and entrepreneurs of tomorrow.

"I would like to thank my colleagues in the Senate and the House of Representatives for investing in the James Webb Space Telescope," Chairwoman Mikulski continued. The bill also includes strong accountability measures to make sure the James Webb Space Telescope stays on track.
The bill caps the formulation and development cost for Webb at NASA's current estimate of $8 billion. It also requires the Government Accountability Office (GAO) to continually assess the James Webb Space Telescope program's performance.

"I support the James Webb Space Telescope, but my support is not unconditional," Chairwoman Mikulski said. "I am holding NASA and its contractors to their revised estimates. We cannot accept any further overruns."

The James Webb Space Telescope is the successor to the Hubble Space Telescope. Funding for the James Webb Space Telescope was included in the CJS spending bill. That bill passed the House of Representatives and the Senate this week as part of the Consolidated and Further Continuing Appropriations Act. It now moves to the White House for President Obama's signature into law.

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