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Lasers & Sources

America COMPETES passes House on third attempt

29 May 2010
Science Insider

The U.S. House of Representatives approved legislation on 28 May that endorses healthy spending increases for three federal research agencies. The Democrats -- and a handful of Republicans -- who backed the bills had twice before this month been thwarted by legislative roadblocks. But this time they won, and successfully deployed their own rarely used maneuver to regain some of the territory they had ceded to opponents.

By a vote of 262 to 150, legislators authorized $84 billion for research, education, and innovation programs over the next five years at the National Science Foundation, the Department of Energy, and two Department of Commerce agencies -- NOAA and NIST -- under the America COMPETES Reauthorization Act (HR 5116).

Representative Bart Gordon (D-TN), chair of the House Science and Technology Committee, restored the five-year scope in the version that returned to the floor under normal rules, after an attempt the prior week to win passage by reducing the term to three years. And to force his opponents to go on the record, he broke the 248-page bill into nine pieces and called for votes on each provision. (The report language runs to another 1233 pages: see bill text [pdf].)

Full story from Science Insider