WASHINGTON – The Science Coalition (TSC) issued the following statement in response to the House Committee on Appropriations’ approval of Fiscal Year (FY) 2020 appropriations for theDepartment of Energy’s Office of Science and the Office of Basic Research at the Department of Defense (DOD):
“America’s research universities work hand-in-hand with their partners at DOE and DOD to advance scientific innovation, create next-generation energy technologies to power our economy, and strengthen our national security.
“We are encouraged by today’s action by the House Appropriations Committee to increase funding for DOE’s Office of Science by $285 million, which is $1.3 billion more than what was proposed in the president’s budget request. While overall basic research funding is slightly below FY19 funding levels, we commend the Committee for rejecting many of the harmful cuts to the DOD’s basic research enterprise in the president’s budget request and are appreciative of increases provided for the University Research Initiatives programs that have sponsored transformational university-based defense research. Consistent with TSC’s mission, we urge members of the House of Representatives to further increase DOD basic research above FY19 levels as steady and sustained growth in funding is necessary to conduct innovative scientific research to support our national security.
“Additionally, each day that passes without Congress and the White House reaching a deal to raise discretionary budget caps, the closer we get to the return of sequestration. An estimated $593 million for DOE’s Office of Science and $278 million for DOD’s Office of Basic Research is at stake, which would cut off vital fundamental research activities. Without predictable, robust funding, projects that support national security, drive innovation, grow the economy, and expand scientific understanding are in jeopardy.”
Congress has until October 1 to avoid across-the-board reductions in spending, including a nine percent post-sequester cut for non-defense discretionary spending and an 11 percent cut in defense spending. Altogether, research cuts to federal agencies would total more than $5.1 billion.
A recent nationwide poll conducted by The Science Coalition found the American public overwhelmingly supports federal investment in fundamental research, and a majority of voters believe scientific investment should increase.
About the Science Coalition
Established in 1994, The Science Coalition is a nonprofit, nonpartisan organization of more than 50 of the nation’s leading public and private research universities. It is dedicated to sustaining the federal government’s investment in basic scientific research as a means to stimulate the economy, spur innovation, and drive America’s global competitiveness.