Press Release

Gordon Praises Science and Education Funding in Supplemental Appropriations Bill

By SpaceRef Editor
June 21, 2008
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(Washington, DC) – Last night, the House of Representatives passed a revised version of the House Supplemental Appropriations Act, H.R. 2642. This legislation contains appropriated funding for the America COMPETES Act (PL 110-69). Last August, Congress passed and the President signed into law the America COMPETES Act. A response to the 2005 National Academies’ report Rising Above the Gathering Storm, and supported by a wide range of U.S. industries, universities, and science organizations, COMPETES seeks to ensure U.S. students, teachers, businesses, and workers will continue leading the world in innovation, research, and technology.

H.R. 2642, the Supplemental Appropriations Act includes $62.5 million in additional FY08 funding for the National Science Foundation, including $20 million for the Robert Noyce Teacher Scholarship Program and $62.5 million for the Department of Energy Office of Science. This funding was approved on a vote of 416 to 12. House Science and Technology Committee Chairman Bart Gordon (D-TN) offered the following statement on the passage of H.R. 2642:

  • “I am very pleased that this supplemental appropriations bills includes $400 million in additional FY08 funding for science programs, including $125 million to boost funding for critical programs at the National Science Foundation and Department of Energy Office of Science that were authorized in the America COMPETES Act. This funding will help avert layoffs and job losses at our national labs and boost research and teacher training programs that are critical to our nation’s competitiveness.”
  • “Our country cannot and should not compete with the rest of the world on wages when half of the world’s workers earn less than $2 a day. Rather, we need to compete at a higher level – with better skills and higher productivity. That means we need to produce not only the world’s leading scientists and engineers but also ensure that all students will have a strong grounding in math and science and are prepared for technical jobs in every sector of the economy.”
  • “The number one recommendation of the National Academies’ Rising Above the Gathering Storm report was to ensure K-12 STEM teachers across the country have strong content knowledge and effective teaching skills. In COMPETES, we took this recommendation and revamped NSF’s Robert Noyce Teacher Scholarship Program. By providing an additional $20 million for the Noyce program, this supplemental funding bill will ensure that this program can begin to be scaled out at colleges and universities around the country.”
  • “The inclusion of competitiveness funding in this supplemental bill – and the strong funding levels expected to be included in the FY09 House appropriations bills – should leave no doubt about this Congress’ commitment to Federal funded basic research and math and science education.”

Now, H.R. 2642 will be sent to the Senate for further consideration. For more information on the COMPETES Act, please visit the Committee’s website.

SpaceRef staff editor.