Research funds headed for small, but noticeable, cuts

Federal research and development funding appears likely to survive relatively intact for fiscal 2006, following a bruising budget rescission process.

Last weekend, Congress agreed to a 1 percent "haircut" across all government programs to pay for deficit reduction and costs associated with rebuilding the Gulf Coast region after the summer's hurricanes.

As it now stands, the government would spend about $135 billion on research and development in fiscal 2006, according to an analysis by the American Association for the Advancement of Science.

"It's not 2 percent," said a somewhat relieved Kei Koizumi, director of the research and development budget and policy program at AAAS. "But still [the cut] has big impacts."

The higher rescission figure was discussed as Congress began the process this fall. The Senate still must clear the bill. That vote has been complicated by the addition of language to authorize oil drilling in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge.

The new research and development total would leave most agency research coffers flat, with the exception of the Pentagon, Koizumi said. The final budget for the National Science Foundation's research program would be $4.15 billion, down $42 million.

The Pentagon is the largest federal supporter of basic research work conducted at universities, and defense research and development funding saw some notable increases, thanks to congressional appropriators adding money beyond the Bush administration's request.

The Defense Department's total research and development allotment would be $73 billion, including the rescission. That comes to $1.5 billion more than last year, or 2.1 percent. Congress added $3 billion to the Pentagon's science and technology budget, for a total of $14 billion.

But Koizumi said the real plus would be in the form of earmarks for projects in lawmakers' states and districts. Those would deliver $6.7 billion to the military's basic and applied research accounts, despite the Pentagon's proposed cuts to the programs. Congress traditionally adds money into the accounts, and this budget cycle was no exception, Koizumi said.

Robert Boege, executive director of the Alliance for Science and Technology Research in America, welcomed the total government research and development budget numbers for fiscal 2006. "Considering what the [rescission] alternatives would have been, it's a good thing," Boege said.

Stay up-to-date with federal news alerts and analysis — Sign up for GovExec's email newsletters.
FROM OUR SPONSORS
JOIN THE DISCUSSION
Close [ x ] More from GovExec
 
 

Thank you for subscribing to newsletters from GovExec.com.
We think these reports might interest you:

  • Sponsored by G Suite

    Cross-Agency Teamwork, Anytime and Anywhere

    Dan McCrae, director of IT service delivery division, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA)

    Download
  • Data-Centric Security vs. Database-Level Security

    Database-level encryption had its origins in the 1990s and early 2000s in response to very basic risks which largely revolved around the theft of servers, backup tapes and other physical-layer assets. As noted in Verizon’s 2014, Data Breach Investigations Report (DBIR)1, threats today are far more advanced and dangerous.

    Download
  • Sponsored by One Identity

    One Nation Under Guard: Securing User Identities Across State and Local Government

    In 2016, the government can expect even more sophisticated threats on the horizon, making it all the more imperative that agencies enforce proper identity and access management (IAM) practices. In order to better measure the current state of IAM at the state and local level, Government Business Council (GBC) conducted an in-depth research study of state and local employees.

    Download
  • Sponsored by Aquilent

    The Next Federal Evolution of Cloud

    This GBC report explains the evolution of cloud computing in federal government, and provides an outlook for the future of the cloud in government IT.

    Download
  • Sponsored by LTC Partners, administrators of the Federal Long Term Care Insurance Program

    Approaching the Brink of Federal Retirement

    Approximately 10,000 baby boomers are reaching retirement age per day, and a growing number of federal employees are preparing themselves for the next chapter of their lives. Learn how to tackle the challenges that today's workforce faces in laying the groundwork for a smooth and secure retirement.

    Download
  • Sponsored by Hewlett Packard Enterprise

    Cyber Defense 101: Arming the Next Generation of Government Employees

    Read this issue brief to learn about the sector's most potent challenges in the new cyber landscape and how government organizations are building a robust, threat-aware infrastructure

    Download
  • Sponsored by Aquilent

    GBC Issue Brief: Cultivating Digital Services in the Federal Landscape

    Read this GBC issue brief to learn more about the current state of digital services in the government, and how key players are pushing enhancements towards a user-centric approach.

    Download

When you download a report, your information may be shared with the underwriters of that document.