Committee Proposals Pose Damages to Research Funding

As Congress works to advance spending bills, the advocacy community braces for tough budgets following the debt ceiling agreement. The House Appropriations Committee (HAC) leadership has opted to limit funding to well below the debt ceiling agreement, while the Senate remains true to the targeted funding levels.

The National Science Foundation (NSF) falls under the jurisdiction of the Commerce, Justice, Science (CJS) Appropriations Subcommittee. In the House, appropriators set funding for the NSF at $9.63 billion for fiscal year 2024 (FY24). The Senate CJS subcommittee landed on $9.50 billion for the agency. We are discouraged to see these numbers fall far below the community request and funding levels agreed upon in the bipartisan and bicameral CHIPS and Science Act. Nonetheless, we recognize that the NSF fared better than other agencies and note that these numbers are not final and the House is unlikely to pass the CJS or LHHS bills to full committee.

The  National Institutes of Health (NIH), the Advanced Research Project Agency for Health (ARPA-H),  the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ) and Institute for Education Science (IES), all fall under the jurisdiction of  the Labor Health and Human Services (LHHS) Appropriations Subcommittees.

FABBS has joined the broad scientific and health committee in expressing disappointed to see that the House Labor H bill provides $163 billion, a cut of $63.8 billion – or 28 percent – below FY23. The bill eliminates funding for AHRQ, which was $374 million in FY 23. Similar to the CJS bill, due to a lack of support, this bill is unlikely to go full committee.

The bill funds the NIH at $44.6 billion (a cut of $2.8 billion below enacted level), including cuts to:

  • $216 million from the National Cancer Institute (NCI)
  • $139 million from the National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke (NINDS)
  • $139 million from the National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH)
  • $1.5 billion from the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID)

The Advanced Research Project Agency for Health (ARPA-H), a research funding agency in which FABBS has taken a multi-pronged approach to include behavioral science in their outlook, is slated for a $1.0 billion cut below the enacted level, totaling their funding at $500 million.

The bill includes a top line for IES of $707.37 million, a cut of $100.24 million to the FY23 enacted number.

The Senate is expected to mark up the Labor-H bill on July 27.

[See FABBS Federal Science Funding Dashboard]