Status Report

AIP FYI #138 VA/HUD Conference Report: NASA Funding Increased by 3.8%

By SpaceRef Editor
November 15, 2001
Filed under ,

In the final fiscal year 2002 VA/HUD conference report, conferees
gave NASA 1.9 percent more than the President’s request and 3.8
percent more than FY 2001 funding. Space Science, Earth Science,
and Biological and Physical Research will all receive increases
over the request. Human Space Flight will get less than
requested, as will the International Space Station, amid concerns
about the program’s cost overruns and final configuration. While
the FY 2001 budget levels are provided below, direct comparisons
between FY 2002 and FY 2001 levels are not valid because NASA
reorganized its accounting structure. Although total NASA
funding is increased, the conference report contains many
specific, detailed earmarks for how large portions of the
additional money should be used. Selected quotes from the report
are highlighted below, and the full text of the conference
report (H. Rpt. 107-272) is available at

TOTAL NASA FUNDING will grow to $14,793.2 million for FY 2002.
This is an increase of 1.9 percent, or $281.8 million, above
President Bush’s FY 2002 request of $14,511.4 million. It is
also an increase of 3.8 percent, or $540.0 million, over the FY
2001 budget of $14,253.2 million.

SPACE SCIENCE will receive $2,848.9 million. This is 2.2
percent, or $62.5 million, over the request of $2,786.4 million.
It is also $527.9 million over FY 2001 funding of $2,321.0
million, although a direct comparison cannot be made.

Within Space Science, the conference report increases Sun-Earth
Connections for the Living With A Star program by $10.0 million
above the request, stating, “the conferees believe that
understanding solar variability and its effect on earth and
mankind is of paramount importance as we strive to understand our
galaxy. Increasing our knowledge of the effects of solar
variability and disturbances on terrestrial climate change and
being able to provide advanced warning of energetic particle
events that affect the safety of humans and space flight are also
of particular importance.” The conferees also provide an
additional $3.0 million above the request for Sun-Earth
Connections program for the Solar Probe.

The conference report provides “an increase of [$30.0 million]
for the Pluto Kuiper Belt (PKB) mission…. Funds provided
should be used to initiate appropriate spacecraft and science
instrument development as well as launch vehicle procurement.
The conferees direct NASA to consolidate PKB development funds
within the Outer Planets line beginning in fiscal year 2003.”

The conferees provide the full budget request of $92.1 million
“for advanced technology development related to the Next
Generation Space Telescope (NGST) and expect NASA to vigorously
pursue the development of the NGST…with the goal of a launch in
2007. If technical and budgetary constraints preclude the launch
of NGST by 2007, the conferees wish to underscore their strong
desire that there should be no gap between the end of the
operations for the Hubble Space Telescope (HST) and the onset of
operations for NGST. As part of the out-year budget plan, NASA
should outline its transition plan to guarantee uninterrupted
continuity between HST and NGST.”

The conferees “agree to provide the full budget request for the
Mars program. NASA is directed to prepare a detailed plan…on
future Mars missions beyond the proposed 2007 mission.”

EARTH SCIENCE will receive $1,573.4 million. This is 3.9
percent, or $58.4 million, over the request of $1,515.0 million.
It is also $88.8 million over FY 2001 funding of $1,484.6
million, but again, a direct comparison between years cannot be

Within Earth Science, the conferees provide an increase of $6.0
million above the request “for the EOSDIS Core System to expand
its data processing and distribution capacity,” and an increase
of $23.5 million “for the Synergy program to develop additional
end uses for EOS data.” An increase of $1.0 million is provided
“for the Triana Science Team to continue its work in preparation
for future launch…. The conferees recognize the important
scientific contributions to be made by Triana,” but its launch
has been on hold “due to Shuttle manifest conflicts.” To offset
some of the many earmarked increases, a general reduction of
$17.2 million from the request is to be applied to Earth

BIOLOGICAL AND PHYSICAL RESEARCH will receive $714.4 million.
This is 97.9 percent, or $353.5 million, over the request of
$360.9 million. It is also $401.5 million over FY 2001 funding
of $312.9 million, but not directly comparable. The conferees
“have agreed to transfer a total of [$283.6 million] from the
Human Space Flight account into this program for research
activities associated with the International Space Station.” An
additional increase of $55.0 million for space station research
is provided “for the Fluids and Combustion Facility and other
priority space station research and equipment.”

HUMAN SPACE FLIGHT will be funded at $6,912.4 million. This is a
reduction of 5.3 percent, or $383.6 million, from the request of
$7,296.0 million. Although direct comparison cannot be made, it
is $1,461.5 million over FY 2001 funding of $5,450.9 million.
This amount includes a general reduction of $75.0 million from
the space station program. Additionally, “the conferees have not
provided any additional funding for the Crew Return Vehicle….
The funding level also reflects the transfer of [$283.6 million]
for ISS research from the human space flight account” to
Biological and Physical Research. For the space shuttle, “the
conferees direct that not less than [$207.0 million] be made
available for Space Shuttle Safety Upgrades,” unless NASA submits
an Operating Plan adjustment.

Within Human Space Flight, funding for the INTERNATIONAL SPACE
STATION will drop to “no more than” $1,963.6 million. This is a
decrease of 5.9 percent, or $123.8 million, from the request of
$2,087.4 million, and $149.3 million less than FY 2001 funding of
$2,112.9 million. The conference report contains extensive
language on the space station, which will be provided in FYI

ACADEMIC PROGRAMS will grow to $230.8 million. This is a 50.2
percent, or $77.1 million, increase over the request of $153.7
million and $98.1 million over FY 2001 funding of $132.7 million.
Within this account, the National Space Grant College and
Fellowship program will receive an increase of $5.0 million, and
EPSCoR an increase of $5.4 million, above the request.

section for the Office of Science and Technology Policy, the
conference report states, “the conferees agree that the Office of
Science and Technology Policy should make the clarification of
the International Traffic in Arms Regulation a high priority for
resolution. The conferees expect the President’s Science Advisor
to address and resolve the matter by February 1, 2002.”


Audrey T. Leath

Media and Government Relations Division

The American Institute of Physics

(301) 209-3094


SpaceRef staff editor.