The National Academies: Advisers to the Nation on Science, Engineering, and Medicine
NATIONAL ACADEMY OF SCIENCES NATIONAL ACADEMY OF ENGINEERING INSTITUTE OF MEDICINE NATIONAL RESEARCH COUNCIL
Current Operating Status

The National Academies Testimony before Congress

Public Laws Containing Studies for the National Academies

Briefings to Congress

Congressionally Mandated Reports

Policy Statements and Historical Documents

The OCGA staff

Request a Report (Congressional and Government Staff Only)


Mailing Address:
The Office of Congressional and Government Affairs
The Keck Center of the National Academies
Keck WS1008
500 Fifth Street, NW
Washington, DC 20001
Tel: (202) 334-1601
Fax: (202) 334-2419

Back to Main Page


Title of Law:Consolidated Appropriations Act, 2008
Law #:Public Law 110-161
Passed by Congress:110th Congress (1st Session)

The following are excerpts, highlighted in red, from the final legislation and/or conference report which contain references to and studies for The National Academies. (Pound signs [##] between passages denote the deletion of unrelated text.)

HR2764 Lowey (D-N.Y.) 12/19/07
Enrolled (finally passed both houses)

Making appropriations for the Department of State, foreign operations, and related programs for the fiscal year ending September 30, 2008, and for other purposes.
-- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- ---

######

DIVISION B—COMMERCE, JUSTICE, SCIENCE, AND RELATED AGENCIES APPROPRIATIONS ACT, 2008

TITLE I

DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE

######

SEC. 114. (a) Of the amounts provided for the “National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Operations, Research and Facilities”, $5,856,600 shall be for necessary expenses in support of an agreement between the Administrator of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration and the National Academy of Sciences under which the National Academy of Sciences shall establish the Climate Change Study Committee to investigate and study the serious and sweeping issues relating to global climate change and make recommendations regarding what steps must be taken and what strategies must be adopted in response to global climate change, including the science and technology challenges thereof.

(b) The agreement shall provide for: establishment of and appointment of members to the Climate Change Study Committee by the National Academy of Sciences; organization by the National Academy of Sciences of a Summit on Global Climate Change to help define the parameters of the study, not to exceed 3 days in length and to be attended by preeminent experts on global climate change selected by the National Academy of Sciences; and issuance of a report by the Climate Change Study Committee not later than 2 years after the date the Climate Change Study Committee is first convened, containing its findings, conclusions, and recommendations. Of such amount, $856,600 shall be for the Summit on Global Climate Change and $5,000,000 shall be for the other activities of the Climate Change Study Committee.

This title may be cited as the “Department of Commerce Appropriations Act, 2008”.

######

TITLE IV

RESEARCH AND DEVELOPMENT, TRAINING, AND SERVICES

######

DOMESTIC NUCLEAR DETECTION OFFICE

management and administration

For salaries and expenses of the Domestic Nuclear Detection Office as authorized by the second title XVIII of the Homeland Security Act of 2002 and for management and administration of programs and activities, $31,500,000: Provided, That not to exceed $3,000 shall be for official reception and representation expenses.

research, development, and operations

For necessary expenses for radiological and nuclear research, development, testing, evaluation, and operations, $323,500,000, to remain available until expended.

systems acquisition

For expenses for the Domestic Nuclear Detection Office acquisition and deployment of radiological detection systems in accordance with the global nuclear detection architecture, $129,750,000, to remain available until September 30, 2010: Provided, That none of the funds appropriated under this heading shall be obligated for full-scale procurement of Advanced Spectroscopic Portal Monitors until the Secretary of Homeland Security submits to the Committees on Appropriations of the Senate and the House of Representatives a report certifying that a significant increase in operational effectiveness will be achieved: Provided further, That the Secretary shall submit separate and distinct certifications prior to the procurement of Advanced Spectroscopic Portal Monitors for primary and secondary deployment that address the unique requirements for operational effectiveness of each type of deployment: Provided further, That the Secretary of Homeland Security shall consult with the National Academy of Sciences before making such certification: Provided further, That none of the funds appropriated under this heading shall be used for high-risk concurrent development and production of mutually dependent software and hardware.

######

************************************************************************************
EXPLANATORY STATEMENT SUBMITTED BY MR. OBEY, CHAIRMAN OF THE HOUSE COMMITTEE ON APPROPRIATIONS, REGARDING THE CONSOLIDATED APPROPRIATIONS AMENDMENT OF THE HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES TO THE SENATE AMENDMENT TO H.R. 2764
(12/17/07)
--- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- ---

######

Following is an explanation of the amendment of the House of Representatives (relating to consolidated appropriations for fiscal year 2008) to the amendment of the Senate to H.R. 2764, the State, Foreign Operations, and Related Programs Appropriations Act, 2008, including disclosure of congressional earmarks and congressionally directed spending items as defined in clause 9 of rule XXI of the Rules of the House of Representatives and rule XLIV of the Standing Rules of the Senate.

Section 4 of the House amendment specifies that this explanatory statement shall have the same effect with respect to the allocation of funds and implementation of this Consolidated Appropriations Act as if it were a joint explanatory statement of a committee of conference.

In this statement, the provisions of the House amendment to the Senate amendment are generally referred to as “the amended bill”. Where comparisons are made to House and Senate action, unless otherwise stated these comparisons are to the versions of the applicable 2008 Appropriations Act as passed by the House and as passed by the Senate (or as reported by the Senate Committee on Appropriations, in the case of bills that have not been passed by the Senate).

######

DIVISION A—AGRICULTURE, RURAL DEVELOPMENT, FOOD AND DRUG ADMINISTRATION, AND RELATED AGENCIES APPROPRIATIONS ACT, 2008

######

TITLE VI

RELATED AGENCIES AND FOOD AND DRUG ADMINISTRATION

DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH AND HUMAN SERVICES

FOOD AND DRUG ADMINISTRATION

######

In addition, the Committees expect the FDA to contract with the National Academy of Sciences for a comprehensive study of gaps in public health protection provided by the food safety system in this country. The report should address the recommendations of the FDA Food Protection Plan released in November 2007.

######

DIVISION B—COMMERCE, JUSTICE, SCIENCE, AND RELATED AGENCIES APPROPRIATIONS ACT, 2008

Following is an explanation of the effects of this division of the House amendment to the Senate amendment to H.R. 3093 (hereafter referred to as “the amended bill”) relative to the versions of the Departments of Commerce and Justice, and Science, and Related Agencies Appropriations Act, 2008 (H.R. 3093) passed by the House of Representatives and the Senate.

The legislative intent in the House and Senate versions of H.R. 3093 is set forth in the accompanying House report (H. Rept. 110-240) and the accompanying Senate report (S. Rept. 110-124).

The Senate amended the House bill with an amendment. The Senate amendment to the text deleted the entire House bill after the enacting clause and inserted the Senate bill. Division B of the amended bill resolves the differences between the House and Senate versions of H.R. 3093.

The language and allocations set forth in the House and Senate Reports should be complied with unless specifically addressed to the contrary in division B of the amended bill and this explanatory statement. Report language included by the House which is not changed by the report of the Senate or this explanatory statement and Senate report language which is not changed by this explanatory statement is approved by the Appropriations Committees. This explanatory statement while repeating some report language for emphasis, does not intend to negate the language referred to above unless expressly provided herein. In cases where the House or Senate has directed the submission of a report, such report is to be submitted to both House and Senate Appropriations Committees.

######

ECONOMIC AND STATISTICAL ANALYSIS

######

Intangible Assets.Within funds provided the Bureau of Economic Analysis is directed to enter into an agreement with the National Academy of Sciences to conduct a study relating to the investment of intangible assets. This study shall recommend steps to improve the measurement of intangible assets and their incorporation in the National Income and Product Accounts; identify and estimate the size of the Federal Government’s investment in intangible assets; survey other countries’ efforts to measure and promote investments in intangible assets; and recommend policies to increase investment in intangible assets.

Accurately Reflecting Economic Conditions.Within funds provided the BEA is directed to enter into an agreement with the National Academy of Sciences to conduct a study on methods for collecting data regarding the status of the U.S. economy and determine whether the current data results in an overstatement of economic growth, domestic manufacturing output, and productivity.

######

NATIONAL OCEANIC AND ATMOSPHERIC ADMINISTRATION

OPERATIONS, RESEARCH, AND FACILITIES

(INCLUDING TRANSFERS OF FUNDS)

######

NOAA is directed to enter into an agreement with the National Academy of Sciences to initiate a study on acidification of the oceans. This study, authorized by the Magnuson-Stevens Fishery Conservation and Management Act of 2006, shall examine the impacts of ocean acidification on the United States.

######

GENERAL PROVISIONS—DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE

(INCLUDING TRANSFER OF FUNDS)

######

Section 114.—The amended bill includes section 114 providing for the establishment of the “Climate Change Study Committee” to investigate and study issues relating to global climate change and the organization by the National Academy of Sciences of a Summit on Global Climate Change.

TITLE III

SCIENCE

OFFICE OF SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY POLICY

The conference agreement includes $5,184,000, instead of $5,515,000 as proposed by the House and $5,715,000 as proposed by the Senate.

The Appropriations Committees reiterate language included in the Senate report directing OSTP to provide the Committees, 90 days after enactment of the Act, with a strategic budget plan in response to the National Research Council Earth Science Decadal Survey.

NATIONAL AERONAUTICS AND SPACE ADMINISTRATION

######

Additionally, the Appropriations Committees are concerned about the NASA process that leads to the selection of a course of action when such problems are encountered. Consequently, NASA is directed to establish an ongoing relationship with the National Academy of Sciences for the purpose of providing an independent project review capability using ad hoc committees established under the purview of the Space Studies Board and/or the Aeronautics and Space Engineering Board. It is expected that these reviews will be arranged through NASA’s Office of the Chief Engineer and that the reports prepared by the National Academies will be simultaneously submitted to NASA and the Committees. In the future, the Appropriations Committees do not intend to recommend approval of any major program changes unless an independent review by the National Academies concurs with NASA’s proposed course of action. During a review period, NASA should not take any action that would prejudice the pursuit of any of the options under consideration. A total of $1,000,000 is to be allocated from funding provided for Cross-Agency Support Programs to support creation of this review capability. The Committees expect a report on NASA’s progress in implementing this directive by March 15, 2008.

######

SCIENCE, AERONAUTICS AND EXPLORATION

######

Science.—Within the total amount proposed for Science, Aeronautics and Exploration, the amended bill provides $5,577,310,000 for science activities instead of $5,696,100,000 as proposed by the House and $5,655,200,000 as proposed by the Senate. This level includes a general reduction of $42,090,000. The distribution of this reduction should be outlined in NASA’s operating plan, and the reduction should not be applied to any programs, projects, or activities that are specified in this explanatory statement.

The Appropriations Committees are disappointed by the Administration’s request of a less than one percent increase for fiscal year 2008 and projected minimal increases of approximately one percent over the next several years. The Nation’s investment in research at NASA has made the U.S. the undisputed leader in the study of space and the earth’s environment. NASA’s programs in space science, Earth science, microgravity science, and astrobiology are the types of basic research investments advocated in the National Academies’ Rising Above the Gathering Storm report.

The Appropriations Committees recognize the importance of NASA Earth science research missions to the Nation to advance our ability to monitor climate, weather, and hazards and therefore recommends $40,000,000 for NASA to initiate missions identified in the National Research Council (NRC) report, Earth Science and Applications from Space: National Imperatives for the Next Decade and Beyond. To the extent possible, the initial seven missions should begin in fiscal year 2008. The Earth science decadal survey notes that in 2005, NASA had 18 Earth observation satellites carrying 64 research sensors. Yet in 2007, the capacity is down to 14 missions on orbit, and by 2010 only a few will still be delivering data. Between now and 2010, NASA plans to deploy only five new missions carrying 22 sensors. Currently, NASA’s future plans include starting just two new missions every two years. At that rate, NASA Earth observation research missions will have decreased from 18 down to four or five in the next two decades in the 21st century. Further, the Appropriations Committees are supportive of House direction to continue the development of climate sensors. In order to better inform the Committees on its plans for missions in the 2010-2016 timeframe, NASA should include in its fiscal year 2009 budget submission its plan for meeting these unmet needs.

######

The amended bill includes an increase of $24,000,000 above the request for the research and analysis program. The program has suffered significant cuts in recent years. This program is important to maintaining the scientific vitality of the agency and also provides opportunities for young scientists and researchers to analyze data collected from current NASA missions. The research and analysis funds should be used to support both in-house and academic research. Further, there has not been an assessment of the appropriate balance between flight missions and research and analysis activities in NASA’s space and Earth science programs. Therefore, NASA is directed to enter into an agreement with the National Research Council for an assessment of NASA’s research and analysis activities.

A total of $60,000,000, an increase of $38,400,000 above the budget request, has been provided for the Space Interferometry Mission (SIM). The Appropriations Committees disagree with the Administration’s budget request of refocusing the Navigator Program to fund only core interferometry and related planet-finding science and reducing SIM to a development program. It should be noted that this mission was recommended by the National Academies Decadal Astrophysics report in 1990 and 2000 and should be considered a priority. With the funds proposed, NASA is to begin the development phase of the program in order to capitalize on more than $300,000,000 already invested by the agency. The SIM program has successfully passed all its technological milestones and is thus ready for development.

######

A critical factor that will affect future robotic missions is the source of power for probes that cannot rely on solar energy because they are traveling too far from the Sun (where solar energy density is inadequate), or too close to it (where solar arrays would be imperiled by the Sun’s proximity). Radioisotope Power Systems (RPS) are required for these spacecraft. The Appropriations Committees are aware of concerns by NASA and the Department of Energy that a supply of fuel would not be available. However, NASA has curtailed a major part of its technology development for advanced RPS devices. In order to permit effective planning for future missions, NASA should contract with the National Research Council to prepare a report no later than December 31, 2008 on these issues.

######

The Appropriations Committees concur with language in the Senate report regarding the Joint Dark Energy Mission and have provided the budget request of $2,300,000 for this mission. The Committees appreciate the National Research Council’s Beyond Einstein Program architecture report and have provided an additional $2,000,000 to begin implementing these recommendations. NASA is directed to conduct and complete an open competition to select a Joint Dark Energy Mission for a fiscal year 2009 new start.

The Appropriations Committees reject the Administration’s proposal to transfer the Near Earth Objects (NEO) program from the Science Mission Directorate to the Exploration Mission Directorate.

Further, the Appropriations Committees are concerned that NASA may reduce support for the Arecibo Observatory which is used by NASA to observe and detect NEOs. The Committees believe that this observatory continues to provide important scientific findings on issues of near-space objects, space weather, and global climate change, as well as numerous other research areas. The Committees believe that these endeavors will have scientific merit far beyond the end of the decade. NASA is directed to provide additional funding for the Arecibo Observatory.

In order to assist Congress in determining the optimal approach regarding the Arecibo Observatory, NASA shall contract with the National Research Council to study the issue and make recommendations. As part of its deliberations, the NRC shall review NASA’s report 2006 Near-Earth Object Survey and Deflection Study—and its associated March 2007 Near-Earth Object Survey and Deflection Study as well as any other relevant literature. An interim report, with recommendations focusing primarily on the optimal approach to the survey program, shall be submitted within 15 months of enactment of this Act. The final report, including recommendations regarding the optimal approach to developing a deflection capability, shall be submitted within 21 months of enactment of this Act. The NRC study shall include an assessment of the costs of various alternatives, including options that may blend the use of different facilities (whether ground- or space-based), or involve international cooperation. Independent cost estimating should be utilized.

######

Additionally, the Appropriations Committees expect a portion of this increase to address the top-ranked priorities of the National Academies’ Decadal Survey of Civil Aeronautics. The report presents findings and recommendations on several important technological breakthroughs that the NASA aeronautics research program should focus on during the next decade. Some of the technological challenges need to be addressed if the United States is to realize necessary increases in capacity, safety, security and environmental compatibility of its air transportation system and enable high-speed civil travel and maintain U.S. leadership.

######

In 2005, NASA selected a team for the development of a lunar lander spacecraft consistent with the goals set forth in the Administration’s Renewed Spirit of Discovery and the National Aeronautics and Space Administration Authorization Act of 2005 (Public Law 109-155) which called for a robust lunar robotic program, including robotic lunar landers. The National Research Council’s report: The Scientific Context for Exploration of the Moon further supports robotic precursor missions to the Moon’s surface and the valuable scientific resource such missions will provide for returning humans to the Moon. The Appropriations Committees agree that the NASA selected mission is of critical importance for the exploration vision. For this purpose, $42,000,000 is provided for this lunar lander mission.

######

Achieving the goals of the Exploration Initiative will require a greater understanding of life and physical sciences phenomena in microgravity as well as in the partial gravity environments of the Moon and Mars. Therefore, the Administrator is directed to enter into an arrangement with the National Research Council to conduct a “decadal survey” of life and physical sciences research in microgravity and partial gravity to establish priorities for research for the 2010-2020 decade. Further, within amounts provided, NASA is directed to increase the amount for non-exploration microgravity life and physical sciences research by $13,500,000. These funds are for non-multi-user support and services activities.

######

Cross-Agency Support Programs.—Of the amounts provided for Science, Aeronautics and Exploration, the amended bill provides $556,400,000 for cross-agency support programs, including education. This level includes a general reduction of $4,200,000. The distribution of this reduction should be outlined in NASA’s operating plan, and the reduction should not be applied to any programs, projects, or activities that are specified in this explanatory statement.

Within the amounts provided, $1,000,000 is for the creation of a review capability at the National Academies and the amended bill also provides the full budget request of $2,500,000 for the continued operations of the NASA National Technology Transfer Center. Also, within the amount provided for corporate general and administrative costs, the Appropriations Committees recommend no less than the fiscal year 2007 level for the NASA Independent Verification and Validation Program.

######

The amended bill also includes $8,500,000 for a competitive program to educate students on global climate change as recommended in the National Academies’ Earth Decadal survey.

######

NATIONAL SCIENCE FOUNDATION

The amended bill provides a total of $6,065,000,000 for the National Science Foundation instead of $6,499,000,000 as proposed by the House and $6,553,400,000 as proposed by the Senate.

RESEARCH AND RELATED ACTIVITIES

######

Finally, the National Science Foundation is directed to await the report on service science and its merits by the National Academies, as required in P.L. 110-69, before it evaluates the applicability of such research to the mission of NSF.

######

EDUCATION AND HUMAN RESOURCES

The amended bill provides $725,600,000 for the Education and Human Resources account, instead of $822,600,000 as proposed by the House and $850,000,000 as proposed by the Senate.

NSF not only includes research, but also shares in the responsibility for promoting quality math and science education as intertwining objectives at all levels of education across the United States. Math and science educators play a major role in keeping the U.S. competitive in the 21st century. Increasing the number of highly qualified K-12 math and science teachers is critical to the creation of a new generation of innovators. Recommendations included in the National Academies’ Rising Above the Gathering Storm report discussed the importance of expanding programs to enhance the undergraduate education of the future science and engineering workforce. Within the amounts provided, an additional $5,000,000, for a total of $15,000,000, shall be provided for the Robert Noyce Scholarship program. The House had proposed $36,000,000 above the budget request and the Senate had proposed $15,000,000 above the budget request for this activity. The Robert Noyce Scholarship program encourages talented Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM) undergraduate students and postgraduate professionals to become K-12 mathematics and science teachers.

######

DIVISION C—ENERGY AND WATER DEVELOPMENT AND RELATED AGENCIES APPROPRIATIONS ACT, 2008

Following is an explanation of the effects of this division of the House amendment to the Senate amendment to H.R. 2764 (hereafter referred to as “the amended bill”) relative to the versions of the Energy and Water Development Appropriations Act, 2008 (H.R. 2641 and S. 1751) passed by the House of Representatives and reported by the Senate Appropriations Committee.

The language and allocations set forth in House Report 110-185 and Senate Report 110-127 should be complied with unless specifically addressed to the contrary in the amended bill and explanatory statement. Report language included by the House which is not contradicted by the report of the Senate or the explanatory statement, and Senate report language which is not contradicted by the report of the House or the explanatory statement, is approved. The explanatory statement, while repeating some report language for emphasis, does not intend to negate the language referred to above unless expressly provided herein. In cases where both the House report and Senate report address a particular issue not specifically addressed in the amended bill or explanatory statement, the House report and Senate report are not inconsistent and are to be interpreted accordingly. In cases in which the House or Senate have directed the submission of a report, such report is to be submitted to both House and Senate Committees on Appropriations.

######

ENERGY INFORMATION ADMINISTRATION

The amended bill provides $96,337,000 for the Energy Information Administration instead of $105,095,000 as proposed by the House and the Senate. Within available funds, $1,000,000 is provided for the National Academy of Sciences to support the International Institute for Advanced Systems Analysis’s Global Energy Assessment.

SCIENCE

The amended bill provides $4,055,483,000 for Science instead of $4,514,082,000 as proposed by the House and $4,496,759,000 as proposed by the Senate. Funds previously provided for the Coralville, Iowa, project in the Consolidated Appropriations Act, 2004, are rescinded.

High Energy Physics.—Funding under this heading in the amended bill includes $694,638,000 for High Energy Physics. Within funding for Proton Accelerator-Based Physics, no funds are provided for the NOvA activity in Tevatron Complex Improvements. Within Advanced Technology R&D, in the current constrained environment and without a Critical Decision 0 by the Department, only $15,000,000 is provided for International Linear Collider R&D and $5,455,000 for Superconducting RF R&D.

The Committees on Appropriations appreciate the Beyond Einstein Program architecture report by the National Research Council and support its recommendations. Accordingly, the Department of Energy is directed to proceed jointly with NASA to conduct and complete an open, competitive selection of the science investigation and payload for the Joint Dark Energy Mission (JDEM) during 2008. This selection should use the NASA Announcement of Opportunity process and have as its primary science selection criterion the achievement of improved understanding of dark energy and include improved understanding in astrophysics generally as a secondary criterion. The selection should be made jointly by one official each from NASA and DOE. If DOE and NASA cannot agree on a joint approach for mission implementation, DOE should provide no future year support for this activity or for other space science satellite missions. The Department is directed to continue support for the Super Nova Acceleration Probe during fiscal year 2008.

######

DIVISION D—FINANCIAL SERVICES AND GENERAL GOVERNMENT APPROPRIATIONS ACT, 2008

######

TITLE I

DEPARTMENT OF THE TREASURY

DEPARTMENTAL OFFICES

SALARIES AND EXPENSES

(INCLUDING TRANSFER OF FUNDS)

######

Of the funds provided for the Executive Direction budget activity, the Department is directed to provide $1,500,000 for a study on energy externalities directed by section 1352 of Public Law 109-58. The Senate version of the bill included these funds. [NOTE: This is in reference to a National Academies’ study of energy externalities that was authorized in the Energy Act of 2005.]

######

DIVISION E—DEPARTMENT OF HOMELAND SECURITY APPROPRIATIONS ACT, 2008

######

COAST GUARD

######

NATIONAL INTERESTS IN THE POLAR REGIONS

The Committees on Appropriations are concerned about Coast Guard’s ability to meet its polar operations mission requirements and provide the United States with the capability to support national interests in the polar regions. These mission requirements include, but are not limited to: global reach to the North and South poles; monitoring of U.S.-bound vessel traffic transiting international waterways in the far north; support of the International Ice Patrol; and support of other governmental and scientific organizations in pursuit of marine and atmospheric science activities in the polar regions. The Committees on Appropriations are specifically concerned whether Coast Guard’s aging polar icebreaking fleet can meet current mission performance goals and whether this fleet and the service’s small cadre of specialized polar operations personnel are capable of meeting projected mission performance goals in light of changing environmental conditions and increased activity in the polar regions. The National Academy of Sciences made several recommendations in this regard in September 2006, but the Administration has taken no action to implement those recommendations.

Therefore, the Commandant is directed to submit a comprehensive polar operations report that fully assesses the Coast Guard’s ability to meet current and projected polar mission requirements and includes an evaluation of how Coast Guard’s current capabilities and resources must be adapted or enhanced to account for changing environmental conditions and increased activity in the polar regions. This report is to include an analysis of the need for any permanent, forward operating presence in the polar regions in order to meet mission requirements and an assessment of the Coast Guard’s ability to meet the requirements of partner agencies operating in the polar regions, such as the National Science Foundation (NSF) and the Departments of Commerce and Defense, under current and projected environmental conditions. Finally, this report should include an appraisal of the sustainability of the current operations and maintenance cost sharing arrangement between the Coast Guard and NSF to support both current and projected polar icebreaker operations.

######

ACQUISITION, CONSTRUCTION, IMPROVEMENTS, AND RELATED EXPENSES

The conferees provide $3,725,000 for United States Secret Service Acquisition, Construction, Improvements, and Related Expenses as proposed by the House and Senate.

TITLE III—PROTECTION, PREPAREDNESS, RESPONSE, AND RECOVERY

NATIONAL PROTECTION AND PROGRAMS DIRECTORATE

MANAGEMENT AND ADMINISTRATION

The amended bill provides $47,346,000 for Management and Administration instead of $40,346,000 as proposed by the House and $30,000,000 as proposed by the Senate. The Committees on Appropriations consolidate and provide $9,412,000 for Departmental risk management and analysis, as proposed by the House. This amount includes up to $1,000,000 for the National Academy of Sciences to review the Department’s approach to measuring risk, as discussed in the House report. Of the total provided for Management and Administration, $5,000,000 of the appropriation is withheld from obligation until the Department provides an expenditure plan to the Committees on Appropriations.

######

OFFICE OF HEALTH AFFAIRS

The amended bill provides $116,500,000 for Office of Health Affairs (OHA) instead of $117,933,000 as proposed by the House and $115,000,000 as proposed by the Senate. Of this amount, $24,317,000 is for salaries and expenses.

The Committees on Appropriations provide up to $2,000,000 for OHA to enter into a grant or contract with the National Academy of Sciences (NAS) to evaluate the effectiveness of BioWatch, including the reliability of monitoring data and the ability of hospitals and public health officials to respond based on information received from those systems. As part of the analysis, NAS should compare the benefits and costs of generation 2 BioWatch technology with generation 3 technology. NAS should also assess the cost and benefits of an enhanced national surveillance system that relies on U.S. hospitals and the U.S. public health system and compare the effectiveness of such a system with the current BioWatch approach. A final report should be completed before the end of fiscal year 2008 and provided to the Committees on Appropriations.

OHA is currently piloting the Automated Pathogen Detection System (APDS), a technology similar to other potential generation BioWatch systems. The Committees on Appropriations are concerned that OHA is not field testing and piloting similar technologies together and urge OHA to incorporate APDS into its Band system generation field testing and pilot program.

OHA is not directed to evaluate possible health effects associated with the presence of formaldehyde gas in FEMA trailers and instead FEMA is directed to work with OHA on testing trailer air quality and developing policies for those people remaining in FEMA issued trailers.

######

The Committees on Appropriations direct FEMA to work with the National Protection and Programs Directorate to utilize the results from the National Academy of Sciences study regarding incorporating natural disasters into the risk formula, once it is completed, as detailed in the House report.

######

RADIATION PORTAL MONITOR PROGRAM

The Committees on Appropriations provide $90,000,000 for the radiation portal monitor program instead of $171,500,000 as proposed by the House and $139,000,000 as proposed by the Senate. Within this appropriation, full funding has been provided for DNDO’s effort to: procure and deploy additional polyvinyl toluene (PVT) based fixed radiation portal monitors (RPMs) to all remaining northern border sites by calendar year 2009, deploy PVT units in the air cargo environment, upgrade and deploy the 45 low rate initial production Advanced Spectroscopic Portal (ASPs) units, and support field validation for ASPs to determine that these systems meet CBP’s functionality requirements.

As of November 15, 2007, 100-percent of all containerized cargo is being screened by RPMs at the southern border. However, the Committees on Appropriations remain deeply concerned about the Department’s ability to detect non-containerized illicit radioactive materials entering the nation. Since the President’s budget submission in February 2007, Congress has appropriated $100,000,000 in unrequested emergency resources to speed placement of fixed radiation detectors at ports of entry (POE). Unfortunately, these resources, as well as prior year appropriations of $64,330,000, remain largely unspent due to additional development required of the ASP monitors and additional evaluation to determine if ASP monitors are significantly more effective than currently deployed technologies. To date, the Committees on Appropriations have not received a certification from the Secretary that the ASP monitors perform more effectively in an operational environment compared to current generation portal monitors. Therefore, limited funding is provided for ASP in fiscal year 2008. The Committees on Appropriations direct $147,000,000, from supplemental funds provided in fiscal year 2007 and annual appropriations provided in fiscal year 2008, be utilized to accelerate the procurement and deployment of PVTs to complete deployment of these systems at all remaining northern border sites. While the current generation technologies may not have the expected capabilities of ASP systems, they are substantially less expensive, proven to work within known limits, and can be quickly deployed to POEs.

The Committees on Appropriations appreciate the difficulties the Secretary faces in certifying the ASP systems and provide sufficient resources to allow DNDO to enter into an agreement with the National Academy of Sciences (NAS) to assist the Secretary in his certification decisions. NAS will help validate testing completed to date, provide support for future testing, assess the costs and benefits of this technology, and bring robustness and scientific rigor to the procurement process. As in prior fiscal years, the Committees on Appropriations include a prohibition of full scale procurement of ASP systems until the Secretary has certified and reported to the Committees that a significant increase in operational effectiveness merits such a decision. However, the amended bill also requires separate and distinct certifications for primary and secondary deployments in recognition of the inherently unique operational requirements each presents. The amended bill also prohibits high-risk concurrent development and production of mutually dependent software and hardware components of detection systems. This restriction is included to address the acquisition and fiscal risks associated with such concurrency and in response to the testing difficulties DNDO has encountered over the last fiscal year.

######

DIVISION F—DEPARTMENT OF THE INTERIOR, ENVIRONMENT, AND RELATED AGENCIES APPROPRIATIONS ACT, 2008

Following is an explanation of the effects of this Division of the House amendment to the Senate amendment to H.R. 2764 (hereafter referred to as “the amended bill”) relative to the versions of the Interior, Environment and Related Agencies Appropriations Act, 2008 (H.R. 2643 and S. 1696) passed by the House of Representatives and reported by the Senate Appropriations Committee.

A detailed table has been included at the end of the Division F portion of this statement showing amounts agreed to by activity and sub-activity. The House and Senate Appropriations Committees note that this statement remains silent on many directives or instructions which were included in the House Report (H. Rpt. 110-187) or the Senate Report (S. Rpt. 110-91) accompanying this bill. The House or Senate report language that is not changed by this statement should be treated as approved when administering the appropriations included in this Division.

######

DIVISION G—LABOR, HEALTH AND HUMAN SERVICES, AND EDUCATION, AND RELATED AGENCIES APPROPRIATIONS, 2008

######

HEALTH PROMOTION

Chronic Disease Prevention, Health Promotion, and Genomics

######

Funding is for the National Academy of Sciences’ Institute of Medicine to examine and make recommendations regarding various means that could be employed to reduce dietary sodium intake to levels recommended by the Dietary Guidelines for Americans as proposed by the Senate. The House did not propose similar language.

######

OFFICE OF THE SECRETARY

GENERAL DEPARTMENTAL MANAGEMENT

(INCLUDING TRANSFER OF FUNDS)

######

The Appropriations Committees have provided sufficient funds for the Office of Women’s Health to work with the advocacy community to develop and implement a sustained lupus awareness and education campaign aimed at reaching health care professionals and the general public with an emphasis on reaching women at greatest risk for developing lupus. The amended bill also includes $1,000,000 for the Institute of Medicine to conduct a comprehensive review of the status of women’s health research, summarize what has been learned about how diseases specifically affect women, and report to the Congress on suggestions for the direction of future research.

######

HIGHER EDUCATION

The amended bill includes $2,057,801,000 for the Higher Education account instead of $2,176,533,000 as proposed by the House and $2,040,302,000 as proposed by the Senate.

For Title VI International Education and Foreign Languages Studies programs, the Appropriations Committees concur in the direction in House Report 110-231 with regard to actions to respond to the National Research Council study on Title VI and Fulbright-Hays. The Department shall use one-third of the funding increase over fiscal year 2007 for Title VI domestic programs to expand the number of academic year and summer foreign language and area studies fellowships. A portion of the increase shall also be used to assist Title VI grantees to enhance databases and develop web portals to improve the dissemination of information produced under these programs to the public. Further, the Appropriations Committees direct that no funds shall be available for an e-learning clearinghouse and any funds diverted from Title VI programs for this purpose shall be restored.

The amended bill includes funds within the Fund for the Improvement of Postsecondary Education to support the following projects in the following amounts:

######

************************************************************************************
HRpt 110-240 - To accompany H.R. 3093
- Making appropriations for Commerce, Justice, Science, and related agencies for the fiscal year ending September 30, 2008, and for other purposes.
House Committee

(7/19/07)
--- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- ---

######

COMMITTEE RECOMMENDATION

######

The Committee is concerned that NASA has decided to close the NASA Institute for Advanced Concepts (NIAC), which funds grants for concept development of revolutionary aeronautical and space systems, without a rigorous assessment of the Institute’s merit. The Administrator is directed to enter into an arrangement with the National Research Council to evaluate NIAC’s effectiveness in meeting its mission, including a review of the grants made by the Institute, their results, and the likelihood that they will contribute to the Institute’s stated goals; evaluate the method by which grantees are selected and recommend changes, if needed; and make recommendations as to whether the Institute should continue to be funded by the Federal government and, if so, what changes, if any, should be made to its mission, goals, operations, or other matters. The Administrator should submit the NRC report to the Committee no later than 14 months after enactment of this Act.

######

COMMITTEE RECOMMENDATION

######

NASA should enter into an agreement with the Space Studies Board of the National Academies on innovative approaches to educate and train scientists and users of Earth observations and applications, and to assist educators in inspiring and training students in the use of the Earth observations and the information derived from those observations. The report shall be completed no later than 15 months after enactment of this Act, and NASA shall submit a report to the Committee no later than 18 months after enactment of this Act with its plan for implementing the recommendations of the report.

######

************************************************************************************
SRpt 110-124 - To accompany S. 1745
- Making appropriations for the Departments of Commerce and Justice, science, and related agencies for the fiscal year ending September 30, 2008, and for other purposes
Senate Committee

(6/29/07)
--- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- ---

######

STATE AND LOCAL LAW ENFORCEMENT ASSISTANCE

######

Forensic Science Research and Policy.The Committee has recently become aware of the American Judicature Societies [AJS] work on a forensics committee and its desire to form a commission. The Committee believes that this can be complementary to the Committee the Congress funded, which is underway, at the National Academies of Science [NAS] and that the membership of the AJS has an immense amount of experience and knowledge that can contribute greatly to this issue but is concerned about duplicity of subjects. Therefore, the Committee directs the AJS and NAS to provide to the Committee no later than September 30, 2008 a proposed statement of work for the AJS to complement the NAS with a focus on the legal issues in forensics such as education of judges and lawyers, not just on the capabilities and methodologies of forensic techniques, but on the scientific method, the scope of expertise, and the meaning (probative value) of conclusions and opinions; equal access to experts by indigent defendants; impact of laboratory backlogs on speedy trial issues; Criminal Science Investigation [CSI] affect and its relationship to voir dire, the presentation of evidence, openings and closings, and jury instructions; ethical guidelines for the use of forensic evidence and experts by prosecutors and defense; additional factors to be considered by courts for the gatekeeper evaluation of expert testimony in disciplines that do not lend themselves to the common Daubert factors annunciated by the Court; and proactive measures by which prosecutors, police and labs can look at cases for incidences of actual innocence.

######

************************************************************************************
SRpt 110-127 - To accompany S. 1751
- Making appropriations for energy and water development for the fiscal year ending September 30, 2008, and for other purposes
Senate Committee

(7/09/07)
--- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- ---

######

SAFEGUARDS AND SECURITY

The Committee recommendation for the Safeguards and Security program is $893,057,000, an increase of $12,000,000. The Committee is frustrated with the continued climb in funding for this activity and the constantly increasing demands for additional resources. Currently, the Department and laboratories spend over $1 billion on physical security costs. The ever increasing costs lies in the application of the Design Basis Threat, which is linked to manpower needs. The Committee continues to be concerned that the Department does not have a realistic threat assessment in which to accurately assign risk and allocate scarce resources. This view is based on the continued escalation of security costs around the complex that seem to have no ceiling. Therefore, the Committee recommends the National Academy of Sciences analyze how the Design Basis Threat is currently formulated along with the funding requests to meet these requirements and then build a comprehensive “probabilistic risk assessment” tool for comparison purposes and provide a report back to the Committee on Appropriations. The Committee expects the NAS to perform this evaluation for both the physical and cyber environments and to inform the Committee if the Department has identified the proper balance between the two activities.

######

************************************************************************************
SRpt 110-91 - To accompany S. 1696 - Making appropriations for the Department of the Interior, environment, and related agencies for the fiscal year ending September 30, 2008, and for other purposes

Senate Committee

(6/26/07)
--- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- ---

######

COMMITTEE RECOMMENDATION

######

The Committee notes that EPA continues to increase its support for nanotechnology research within its base budget, including a $1,600,000 increase for nanoscale research in its fiscal year 2008 budget. The Committee is committed to ensuring that all Federal environmental, health and safety research is prioritized and coordinated so that nanotechnology’s potential benefits to the economy and environment are realized at the same time that human health and the environment are protected. To further these goals, the Committee urges EPA to contract or enter into a cooperative agreement with the National Academy of Sciences’ Board on Environmental Studies and Toxicology within 90 days of enactment to develop and monitor implementation of a comprehensive, prioritized research roadmap for all Federal agencies on environmental, health and safety issues for nanotechnology.

######

************************************************************************************
HRpt 110-181 - To accompany H.R. 2638
- Making appropriations for the Department of Homeland Security for the fiscal year ending September 30, 2008
House Committee

(6/08/07)
--- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- ---

######

RISK MANAGEMENT AND ANALYSIS

Within the Management and Administration account, the Committee consolidates funding for the NPPD Risk Management and Analysis Office, which will serve as the Department’s source of expertise in risk analysis and methods. This office will provide assistance in risk analysis for other Departmental offices. In total, the budget for this office is $9,412,000, nearly all of which is derived from funding requests for other NPPD program budgets for risk analysis activities.

The Committee recognizes the need for DHS to produce sound risk analyses, but is concerned about the approach DHS takes to quantify risk, particularly how the Department incorporates the risk of natural disasters into the risk models it uses for grant-making purposes. The Committee also questions whether it is wise or even possible for the Department to develop a “unified” risk model that could meet the needs of every DHS agency and component. To answer these questions, and enable the new Risk Management and Analysis function to understand the challenges it faces, the Committee recommends that up to $1,000,000 be used by the National Academy of Sciences to: (1) evaluate the quality of the current DHS approach to measuring risk; (2) assess the significance accorded to the risk of natural disasters by such methodologies; (3) review the feasibility of combining terrorist threats and natural disasters within a single risk analysis; and (4) recommend how the risk models currently used by DHS can be improved and validated using empirical scientific standards.

######

ALL-HAZARDS

Homeland Security Presidential Directive-8 “establishes policies to strengthen the preparedness of the United States to prevent and respond to threatened or actual domestic terrorist attacks, major disasters, and other emergencies by requiring a national domestic all-hazards preparedness goal, establishing mechanisms for improved delivery of Federal preparedness assistance to State and local governments, and outlining actions to strengthen preparedness capabilities of Federal, State, and local entities.” Unfortunately, the Inspector General review of FEMA’s disaster management activities in response to Hurricane Katrina noted that “DHS’ prevention and preparedness for terrorism have overshadowed that for natural hazards, both in perception and in application.” FEMA is directed to work with the National Protection and Programs Directorate (NPPD) as it evaluates how to incorporate the risk of natural disasters within the risk models used for grant-making. The Committee recognizes this may require multiple risk methodologies and has directed NPPD to commission a study by the National Academy of Sciences (NAS) to review the feasibility of combining terrorist threats and natural disasters within a single risk analysis. FEMA is directed to utilize the results from the NAS study to work toward the goal of ensuring that all hazards are appropriately addressed in grant allocations.

######

************************************************************************************
SRpt 110-107 - To accompany S. 1710
- Making appropriations for Departments of Labor, Health and Human Services, and Education and related agencies for the fiscal year ending September 30, 2008, and for other purposes
Senate Committee

(6/27/07)
--- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- ---

######

CHRONIC DISEASE PREVENTION AND HEALTH PROMOTION

######

Nutrition and Salt Study.—Within the amount provided for Nutrition, Physical Activity and Obesity, the Committee has provided $1,000,000 for a study by the Institute of Medicine of the National Academy of Sciences that will examine and make recommendations regarding various means that could be employed to reduce dietary sodium intake to levels recommended by the Dietary Guidelines for Americans. These should include, but not be limited to, actions by food manufacturers, such as new product development and food reformulation, and governmental approaches, such as regulatory, legislative approaches, and public and professional information and education.

######

RSS News Feed | Subscribe to e-newsletters | Feedback | Back to Top