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Volume 2, No. 17                October 13, 1998
FY 1999 NASA Budget

The FY 1999 VA-HUD-IA Appropriations Bill provides $13.665 billion for NASA -- $200 million more than requested by the Administration. The final amount is $337 above the House bill and $50 million more than recommended by the Senate.

The budget for Human Space Flight is $5.48 billion, down from $5.68 billion in FY 1998. The President requested $5.51 billion. The space station will receive $2.27 billion and the Payload and Utilization budget is $182 million -- in both cases the amount requested by the President. The space shuttle budget totals $3.028 billion, slightly below the President's request of $3.059 billion and slightly above the FY 1998 budget of $2.923 billion.

The Science, Aeronautics, and Technology account is set at $5.654 billion -- $196.5 million above the President's request and about $100 million more in spending than FY 1998. The Space Science budget is boosted by $60.8 million. At the same time, the bill earmarks $103 million for various programs, including an increase of $20 million for the Mars 2001 program, $12 million more for the Next Generation Space Telescope, $10 million more for Solar Space Power, and $1 million more for the Near Earth Asteroid Tracking program.

The Life and Microgravity Sciences budget is $263.5 million -- $21.5 above the President's request. Of this amount, $15 million is set aside for a FY 1999 shuttle mission that "accommodates research payloads," and $6.5 million is for space radiation research.

The Earth Sciences budget was increased by $41.8 million. In this account, Congress earmarked $53 million to assorted programs. The Aeronautics and Space Transportation budget is $1.339 billion -- about $34 million above the President's request and about $132 million less than the FY 1998 budget. Congress directed $47.5 million in spending to specific programs, including an additional: $6 million to study liquid flyback booster systems, $20 million for NASA's participation in the Air Force Military Space Plane, and, $6 million for hybrid propulsion. Funding for Academic Programs was boosted by $38.5 million to $138.5 million. The bill also:

  • Changes NASA's Lewis Research Center to the John Glenn Research Center at Lewis Field;
  • Restricts the use of non-space station funds for space station related activities;
  • Directs NASA to submit a separate account for the international space station in its FY 2000 budget proposal;
  • Removes the House language that prohibited the use of FY 1999 funds for the Triana mission, also known as Goresat;
  • Includes language to provide indemnification and cross-waivers of liability with regard to the X-33 and X-34 programs;

About the NSS Capital Capsule
The Capsule is a timely report of highlights from Capitol Hill hearings and other events involving space issues. Prepared by NSS staff or volunteers who attend in person, the Capsule provides NSS members and activists an "insider's" look into the thoughts of our national elected officials on space issues.

The National Space Society is an independent, nonprofit space advocacy group with headquarters in Washington, DC. Its 20,000 members and 75 chapters actively promote the creation of a spacefaring civilization.

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