Status Report

AIP FYI #102: Reaction to House FY 2005 NSF Budget Bill

By SpaceRef Editor
July 26, 2004
Filed under , ,

It did not take long for the Coalition on National Science Funding
to issue a letter critical of the draft FY 2005 VA, HUD and
Independent Agencies Appropriations Bill that would cut next year’s
National Science Foundation budget by 2%. CNSF, a well-recognized
coalition of over 90 professional societies, universities, and
corporations, has long been active in advocating for the National
Science Foundation. The American Institute of Physics and several
of its Member Societies – the American Astronomical Society,
American Geophysical Society, American Physical Society, and Optical
Society of America – are CNSF members. The coalition’s website is

The following is the full text of the July 22 CNSF statement that
was sent to the Members of the House of Representatives:

“The Coalition for National Science Funding (CNSF) is extremely
concerned with the FY 2005 U.S. House of Representatives VA-HUD and
Independent Agencies Appropriations Subcommittee budget mark for the
National Science Foundation (NSF). This mark of $5.47 billion is
two percent less than the current FY 2004 NSF budget and is five
percent less than the President’s FY 2005 budget request for the
NSF. Reduction in the NSF budget will curtail many current research
efforts and inhibit new program starts – putting at risk this
country’s leadership in many scientific fields.

“This budget action is diametrically opposite of Public Law (PL)
107-368, authorizing a doubling of the NSF budget over five years.
This action is also contrary to the sentiment of a recent bipartisan
‘Dear Colleague’ letter sent to VA-HUD Subcommittee Chairman Walsh
and Ranking Minority Member Mollohan this spring, signed by 157
Members of the House of Representatives, asking that the NSF be
considered for a significant budget increase [see].

“We urge the full House Appropriations Committee and the full House
of Representatives to provide a significant increase to the NSF
budget during consideration of the VA-HUD bill. We ask that this
increase reflect the spirit of PL 107-368 and the recent ‘Dear
Colleague’ letter.

“Chairman Walsh and Ranking Minority Member Mollohan are supporters
of the NSF. Their support over the last several years has helped
the NSF budget grow to its current level. The CNSF realizes that
the FY 2005 mark is mostly the product of an inadequate allocation
to the VA-HUD Subcommittee. However, even in tough budget
environments, adequate investment in the nation’s research
enterprise should be a priority.

“The NSF is one or our nation’s greatest tools for the promotion and
advancement of scientific, mathematical, and engineering research
and education. Although NSF accounts for only 4% of federal R&D
spending, it supports nearly 50% of the non-medical basic research
at our colleges and universities. It funds research in new
frontiers of scientific inquiry and contributes to creating a highly
skilled, competitive workforce in science and engineering. It is
imperative that the NSF be adequately funded so that the nation’s
research enterprise is robust.”

Richard M. Jones

Media and Government Relations Division

The American Institute of Physics

(301) 209-3094

SpaceRef staff editor.