House and Senate Appropriators Release Details of the Final FY 2011 Appropriations Deal

On Monday, April 11, the legislation to “seal the deal” on final funding for the entire federal government for the remainder of fiscal year (FY) 2011 was introduced in the U.S. House of Representatives. The final bill would save a total of $38.5 billion below the FY 2010 enacted level through a combination of savings in discretionary appropriated programs and changes in mandatory programs. The House intends to take up the bill on Wednesday, April 13 with Senate action anticipated on Thursday, April 14. Both chambers will likely have to depend on crossover votes from the minority party in order to pass the bill and send it to the President for his signature before Friday at midnight when the current Continuing Resolution (CR) expires. Key takeaway points include:

  • The bill would set non-defense spending levels for the last half of the fiscal year and includes rescissions (cancellation) of previously provided funding that has not yet been spent.
  • Federal science agencies generally fared well in the final appropriations measure, although all of the non-defense funding levels would be reduced by a 0.2 percent across-the-board cut to achieve savings of approximately $1.1 billion.
  • The final appropriations measure includes the full Department of Defense spending bill which provides a minimal increase for DOD above the FY 2010 enacted level.
  • The bill requires the National Science Foundation, National Aeronautics and Space Administration, and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration to provide spending plans to Congress within 60 days of enactment of the bill.

Proposed funding levels in the final FY 2011 appropriations bill are as follows and do not include the 0.2 percent across-the-board reduction:

National Institutes of Health (NIH).
NIH would receive $30.7 billion in the final FY 2011 appropriations bill, a cut of $260 million or less than 1 percent below FY 2010 levels. While the biomedical research community advocated for level funding for NIH in FY 2011, the reduction is not as deep as the $1.6 billion cut included in H.R. 1, the House Republican-proposed FY 2011 appropriations bill. Of the $260 million reduction, $210 million would be cut from research funding and $50 million would be cut from funding for buildings and facilities on the NIH campus in Bethesda, MD. The $210 million cut would be applied proportionally across all institutes and centers, and to programs within the Office of Director.

Other Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) Programs.

  • Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA): The bill provides $6.247 billion for HRSA, which would be a cut of $1.259 billion below FY 2010 levels. Included are significant cuts to the Community Health Centers, rural health programs and the health professions training programs.
  • Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ): The bill contains $372 million for AHRQ, which is $25 million below the FY 2010 enacted level.
  • Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA): The bill includes $3.386 billion for SAMHSA which is a $45 million decrease from the FY 2010 enacted level.
  • Centers for Disease Control (CDC): The bill contains $5.66 billion for CDC, an estimated $814 million reduction from the FY 2010 enacted level. This amount includes reductions for funding for the Emerging and Zoonotic Infectious Disease Program, the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health, and HIV/AIDS, Viral Hepatitis, STD and TB Prevention.

Department of Energy (DOE).
The DOE Office of Science is slated for $4.884 billion in the final FY 2011 bill, a reduction of $35 million below the FY 2010 enacted level, and $252 million below the President’s FY 2011 budget request. Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy (EERE) activities would receive a total of $1.835 billion, a reduction of $438 million below the FY 2010 enacted level and $550 million below the President’s FY 2011 budget request. The Electricity Delivery and Energy Reliability programs at DOE would be funded at $145 million, a reduction of $31 million below the FY 2010 level. A total of $737.1 million is recommended for Nuclear Energy, a reduction of $56 million below the FY 2010 level. Fossil Energy R&D programs would receive $586 million, a reduction of $226 million below FY 2010. The Advanced Research Projects Agency-Energy (ARPA-E) would receive $180 million to support high-risk, high-reward research on game-changing energy technologies, which is $180 million above the FY 2010 funding level.

Department of Defense (DOD).
The bill includes $513 billion for DOD which is about $5 billion or less than 1 percent above the FY 2010 enacted level. Despite the slight increase, the bump is significantly less than DOD has seen in recent years and illustrates a newfound Congressional willingness to put defense spending on the table when looking for savings. Within the total, $74.77 billion is included for research, development, test, and evaluation activities, a decrease of $5.57 billion or 7 percent below the FY 2010 enacted level. Specifically, Army RDTE would receive $9.71 billion (15 percent below the FY 2010 level); Navy RDTE would receive $17.74 billion (11 percent below the FY 2010 level); Air Force RDTE would receive $26.52 billion (6 percent below the FY 2010 level); and Defense-wide RDTE, which funds the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) and research programs at a variety of other agencies would receive $20.8 billion (an increase of less than 1 percent above the FY 2010 level).

Department of State/U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID).
A total of $48.3 billion is included for foreign operations through the Department of State and U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID), which would represent a reduction of $504 million or 1 percent below the FY 2010 enacted level. While most of the money is taken from direct foreign assistance and contributions to international organizations such as the United Nations, the compromise also includes a reduction of $33 million from education and cultural exchange programs. Significant reductions below the FY 2010 enacted levels also come from funding for international climate change assistance, an international clean technology fund, and an initiative to hire hundreds of new foreign and civil service officers at the State Department and USAID. The reduction to hiring authority may jeopardize the agencies’ ability to add contracting specialists and individuals with science and engineering backgrounds as proposed by Secretary of State Hillary Clinton and USAID Administrator Rajiv Shah as part of the Administration’s efforts to modernize U.S. diplomacy and foreign assistance.

National Science Foundation (NSF).
NSF would be funded at $6.874 billion in the final FY 2011 appropriations bill, $53 million or 0.8 percent below the FY 2010 level, and $551 million below the President’s FY 2011 budget request. (If the $54 million transferred to the Coast Guard in FY 2010 for icebreaking services is not included in the FY 2010 baseline, then the amount provided for FY 2011 is essentially flat). NSF’s Research and Related Activities (R&RA) account would be funded at $5.575 billion, $43 million (0.8 percent) below the FY 2010 level, and the Education and Human Resources account (EHR) would be funded at $862.8 million, $10 million (1.2 percent) below the FY 2010 level.

National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA).
Overall, NASA would receive $18.485 billion, a decrease of $239 million or 1.3 percent below the FY 2010 enacted level. Yet, while the overall level for NASA would be decreased, several individual accounts are increased. Science would receive $4.945 billion, an increase of $452 million or 10 percent above the FY 2010 enacted level and just $60 million below the President’s FY 2011 request. Aeronautics would also receive an increase to $535 million, 5.5 percent above the FY 2010 level. The new Space Technology program is not mentioned. Education would receive the largest percentage cut of any NASA account, down 20.7 percent to $145.8 million. However, this amount is consistent with the President’s FY 2011 budget request for Education and largely reflects the elimination of funds for Congressional earmarks. The bill would also remove restrictions on the human space flight program, allowing NASA to move forward with its replacement of the Constellation rocket development program as authorized in the NASA Authorization Act passed this fall.

National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA).
The final agreement would provide NOAA with approximately $4.52 billion, which would represent a reduction of about $142 million or 3 percent below the FY 2010 enacted level. More significantly, this amount would not cover the sizable funding increases requested by President Obama for NOAA’s satellite programs in FY 2011, specifically the Joint Polar-Orbiting Satellite System (JPSS). The bill includes $3.185 billion for NOAA’s Operations, Research and Facilities (ORF) account, which is $119 million or 3.6 percent below FY 2010. In addition, the Procurement, Acquisition and Construction (PAC) account (the account that funds NOAA’s satellite programs) would receive $1.335 billion, which is $23 million or 1.7 percent below FY 2010 (but $865 million below the amount requested by the President). These final funding numbers for NOAA are largely in-line with the amounts floated earlier in the year in prior CRs. However, the current CR also includes language stating that for the remainder of FY 2011, none of the funds appropriated to NOAA may be used to “implement, establish, or create a NOAA Climate Service.” This limitation reflects the objection of many Congressional Republicans to NOAA’s plans to reorganize the agency to enable the development of a Climate Service line office. Many Congressional Republicans are of the belief that NOAA requires legislation to authorize such reorganization.

National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST).
NIST would receive $751.6 million, a reduction of $105 million or 12.3 percent below FY 2010 enacted levels.NIST’s Scientific and Technical Research Services (STRS), which funds research, competitive grants, and research fellowships, would receive $508 million for FY 2011, down $7 million or 1.4 percent below the FY 2010 enacted level. Industrial Technology Services (ITS) would receive $173.6 million, a reduction of $21 million or 10.8 percent below FY 2010. Within the ITS account, the Technology Innovation Program is slated to receive $44.9 million, a reduction of $25 million or 35.8 percent below FY 2010. The Hollings Manufacturing Extension Partnership (MEP), also within ITS, would receive $128.7 million, an increase of $4 million or 3.2 percent above the FY 2010 enacted level. Construction of Research Facilities (CFR) would be funded at $70 million, a reduction of $77 million or 52.4 percent below FY 2010. Congress provided no additional funding for the extramural Construction Grant Program in the final appropriations bill.

Department of Homeland Security (DHS).
The bill includes $688 million for the DHS Science and Technology Directorate, which is a decrease of $175 million from the FY 2010 enacted level. The bill contains language that would ensure that funding for University Programs is not reduced by more than 20 percent from the FY 2010 enacted level.

Department of Education.
The final FY 2011 appropriations bill would keep the Pell maximum at $5,550; however it would eliminate the year round Pell grant, as proposed in the President’s FY 2012 budget request, for the 2011-2012 academic year. The bill would provide $737.5 million for the Federal Supplemental Education Opportunity Grants (SEOG) program, a reduction of $20 million or 2.6 percent from the FY 2010 enacted level. It would eliminate funding for the Leveraging Education Assistance Partnership (LEAP) program, which was funded at a level of $63.9 million in FY 2010. The bill would also provide $150 million for the Investing in Innovation (i3) program and $700 million for the Race to the Top program, two priorities of the Obama Administration. The Title VI International Education and Foreign Language programs would receive $75.9 million, a reduction of $50 million or 39.7 percent from the FY 2010 enacted level.

TRIO programs would receive $828 million, a $25 million or 3 percent reduction from FY 2010, and the Gaining Early Awareness and Readiness for Undergraduate Programs (GEAR UP) would receive $303 million, a $20 million or 6 percent reduction from FY 2010. The Institute of Education Sciences (IES) would receive $610 million, a reduction of $49 million or 7 percent below the FY 2010 enacted level. Finally, the Fund for the Improvement for Post-Secondary Education (FIPSE) would be funded at $19.4 million, a reduction of $140 million or 87.8 percent from the FY 2010 enacted level. It is unclear how this reduction will affect the current FY 2011 FIPSE grant competition.

Cultural Agencies.
The final FY 2011 appropriations bill would fund the National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH) and its sister agency, the National Endowment for the Arts (NEA) each at a level of $155 million, a reduction of $12.5 million or a 7 percent cut from FY 2010 funding. This is above the proposed levels of $146 million included in the President’s FY 2012 budget request and House passed H.R.1. The National Historical Publications and Records Commission (NHPRC), the grant-making arm of the National Archives and Records Administration (NARA), would receive $7 million, a reduction of $6 million or 46 percent from FY 2010. The Institute of Museum and Library Services (IMLS) would receive $237.8 million, a reduction of $28 million or 10 percent below FY 2010. The Corporation for Public Broadcasting, which has been targeted in previous budget discussions, would receive $6 million, a reduction of $80 million or 93 percent from the FY 2010 enacted level.

U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) National Institute of Food and Agriculture (NIFA)
The final bill would provide NIFA with $1.22 billion, a reduction of $126 million below the FY 2010 enacted leveland the President’s FY 2011 budget request. Funding for the competitive research program, the Agriculture and Food Research Initiative (AFRI), would be increased to $265 million or one percent above the $262. 5 million provided in FY 2010. Funding for the Hatch Act formula program supporting the nation’s land-grant universities would be increased to $237 million, an increase of $22 million or 10 percent above FY 2010. The Smith-Lever sections 3(b) and 3(c) would be funded at $295 million, a reduction of $3 million below FY 2010. The McIntire-Stennis Cooperative Forestry program would receive $33 million, an increase of $4 million or 12 percent above FY 2010.

USDA Agricultural Research Service (ARS)
A total of $1.135 billion would be provided to support ARS, a reduction of $44 million below the FY 2010 enacted level. No new funding is provided for ARS buildings and facilities.

Department of Commerce, Economic Development Administration (EDA)
The final FY 2011 appropriations bill includes $246 million for EDA Economic Development Assistance programs (EDAP), a $9 million or 3 percent reduction below the FY 2010 enacted level. This is also level with the President’s FY 2012 budget request for EDAP.

U.S. Geological Survey (USGS)
USGS would receive $1.085 billion in the final appropriations bill, which is $27 million or 2.42 percent below the FY 2010 enacted level.

The text of the final FY 2011 appropriations legislation can be found here:http://rules.house.gov/Media/file/PDF_112_1/Floor_Text/FINAL2011_xml.pdf

A summary of the legislation from the House and Senate Appropriations Committees can be found here:
House Appropriations Committee: http://appropriations.house.gov/index.cfm?FuseAction=PressReleases.Detail&PressRelease_id=285

Senate Appropriations Committee: http://appropriations.senate.gov/news.cfm?method=news.view&id=5ba835d4-e8d4-47a4-bd13-950f99790f67