Legislation to Double NSF Budget in 10 Years Introduced in the House

January 29, 2020

On Tuesday, January 28, members of the House Science Committee introduced H.R. 5685, the Securing American Leadership in Science and Technology Act. SALTA would authorize doubling science budgets over 10 years, including the National Science Foundation. The bill recommends $9.4 billion in fiscal year (FY) 2021, a significant increase over the FY 2020 $8.3 billion. The Research and Related Activities budget line, which includes the NSF research directorates, would grow from $6.7 billion in FY 2020 to $13 billion in FY 2029. The Education and Human Resources Directorate would receive a much smaller increase from $940 million in FY 2020 to $1.16 billion in FY 2029. Ranking Member Lucas, lead author, is joined by 11 Republican co-sponsors on this bill.

In addition to authorization, the bill includes language to:

  • Conduct an external review of NSF’s research directorate structure to evaluate and possibly improve support for cross- disciplinary research. 
  • Develop a new research security policy for plans to manage security and ethical implications of research, and the authorization of secure computing enclaves. 
  • Prioritize investment in mid-scale research infrastructure, valued between $20 million and $70 million in certain U.S. STEM talent pipeline programs, including the Graduate Research Fellowship Program and Robert Noyce Teacher Scholarship Program. 
  • Provide incentives and training to encourage reproducibility in science.