Scientific Societies Urge Lawmakers to Fund Science

FABBS has joined hundreds of scientific universities, organizations and societies in urging U.S. House and Senate leaders to maintain or increase fiscal year 2011 funding requests for the National Science Foundation and National Institutes of Health.

For the NSF, 125 professional societies and universities signed onto letters by the Coalition for National Science Funding asking that the $7.4 billion budget level supported by the President and both the Senate Appropriations Committee and the House Appropriations Subcommittee on Commerce, Justice, Science and Related Agencies be maintained.

“This budget level demonstrates an extraordinary commitment to address America’s competitiveness by doubling the NSF budget over ten years, as authorized in the bipartisan 2007 America COMPETES Act and promoted by the President,” the Coalition states in identical letters dated Nov. 17, 2010. One letter went to the chairs and ranking members of the House Committee on Appropriations and Subcommittee on CJS, and the other letter was sent to their counterparts in the Senate.

The letters further state: “Such funding is imperative to maintain a prosperous innovation pipeline, by training the innovation workforce, creating new products and improving current products.”

For NIH, 224 scientific and medical societies, research institutions and industry organizations signed onto a November 1, 2010, letter by the Ad Hoc Group for Medical Research requesting support for a proposed $1 billion increase.

The increase, included in the fiscal 2011 Labor-Health and Human Services-Education appropriations bill, would “sustain the pace of progress in the fight against many of our most serious diseases, create new scientific opportunities, support high-technology and result in high-wage jobs in all 50 states,” the letter states.

Further, the letter advises: “A long-term, continuing resolution will slow research progress and squander invaluable scientific opportunities to the detriment of our nation’s health and our ability to maintain leadership in the global innovation economy.”

The letter was addressed to House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and Minority Leader John Boehner, as well as Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid and Minority Leader Mitch McConnell. It also went to the chairs and ranking members of the House and Senate Appropriations Subcommittees on Labor-HHS-Education in both chambers.

Read the NSF letters

Read the NIH letter [PDF] »