Senate FY 2015 DOD Appropriations Bill: S&T Programs

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Publication date: 
22 July 2014
Number: 
125

Last Thursday the Senate Appropriations Committee passed H.R. 4870, the Department of Defense Appropriations Bill for FY 2015. The committee report accompanying this bill provides the appropriators’ budget and policy recommendations for the three science and technology programs.

The following excerpts are from this report:

Basic Research. - The fiscal year 2015 budget request includes $2,017,502,000 for basic research to be performed by all Department of Defense [DOD] services and agencies. This amount is $149,096,000, or 7 percent below the fiscal year 2014 enacted level.  The Committee is discouraged by this sharp decline, because basic research is the foundation upon which other technology is developed.  Further, basic research performed by DOD spans across universities and colleges, small businesses and laboratories, growing future scientists and creating new business opportunities. Earlier this year, the Committee held a hearing on Defense Research and Innovation. The testimony provided by the witnesses indicated that a sharp decline in science and technology investment could threaten America’s technological edge. Therefore, the Committee recommends $2,274,928,000 for basic research, a 5 percent increase for the Department of the Army, Department of the Air Force, Department of the Navy and DOD, above previously enacted levels. The Committee also expects that the Department not make disproportionate or unjustified reductions to science and technology entities as part of the headquarters management reduction initiative.”  (page 187)  An FYI on the Senate hearing is here

Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency [DARPA] Basic Research. -  The Committee provides an increase in basic research of 5 percent over the fiscal year 2014 enacted levels across the services and the defense wide research and development accounts. Of that increase, the Committee provides an additional $30,909,000 for DARPA basic research. As the Department’s leading research agency, the Committee understands that DARPA is best positioned to identify cutting edge research but believes it must utilize a wider set of colleges and universities, smaller defense contractors, and commercial firms. The Committee directs DARPA to submit a report to the congressional defense committees within 120 days after enactment of this act on its plan to utilize the additional funding.” (page 238)

Investments in Medical Research. - The Committee notes that Federal investment in medical research has generated medical discoveries and scientific innovations that have led to longer lives, created new industries, and established the United States as a leader in research and development. In order to maintain our Nation’s global leadership and facilitate future live-saving discoveries, the Committee adds a total of $789,200,000 for medical research, a 5 percent increase over the Committee’s fiscal year 2014 recommendation.” (page 248)

Core Medical Research Funding. - The Committee notes that the Department’s fiscal year 2015 budget for medical research, excluding information technology, severely declined. Core research and development funding supports medical research in medical training and health information sciences, military infectious diseases, military operational medicine, combat casualty care, radiological health, and clinical and rehabilitation medicine. The Committee believes that this research yields important advances in medical care for service members and their families, as well as the larger civilian population. Therefore, the Committee recommends $162,200,000 to restore this unjustified funding reduction and allow the Department to continue funding its core research priorities.” (page 249)

Military Medical Photonics. - Military Medical Photonics research improves battlefield patient care using photomedicine technologies and exemplifies how mission-oriented research can benefit both military and civilian populations. Recent breakthroughs in this research include advances in the removal of kidney stones, diagnosis and treatment of major eye diseases, normalization of severe scarring from war wounds, and rapid imaging of coronary artery disease. The Committee understands that the budget for Military Medical Photonics research decreased significantly from $6,238,000 in fiscal year 2014 to $2,087,000 in the fiscal year 2015 budget request. The Committee encourages the Department to fund this important research at historical levels in future budgets.” (page 258)

The report provides the Senate appropriators’ recommendations for the three defense science and technology programs, starting on page 184.
 
Total 6.1 Basic Research:
The FY 2014 appropriation was $2,166.6 million
The FY 2015 request is $2,017.5 million, a decrease of $149.1 million or 6.9 percent
The House bill provides $2,027.5 million, a decrease of $139.1 million or 6.4 percent below current funding
The Senate bill provides $2,274.9 million, an increase of $108.3 million or 5.0 percent above current funding

Total 6.2 Applied Research:
The FY 2014 appropriation was $4,641.2 million
The FY 2015 request is $4,457.0 million, a decrease of $184.2 million or 4.0 percent
The House bill provides $4,530.2 million, a decrease of $111.0 million or 2.4 percent below current funding
The Senate bill provides $4,592.6 million, a decrease of $48.6 million or 1.1percent below current funding

Total 6.3 Advanced Technology Development:
The FY 2014 appropriation was $5,200.8 million
The FY 2015 request is $5,040.0 million, a decrease of $160.8 million or 3.1 percent
The House bill provides $5,379.1 million, an increase of $178.3 million or 3.4 percent above current funding
The Senate bill provides $5,171.5 million, an decrease of $29.3 million or 0.6 percent below current funding

Total 6.1, 6.2, and 6.3:
The FY 2014 appropriation was $12,008.6 million
The FY 2015 request is $11,514.5 million, a decrease of $494.1 million or 4.1 percent
The House bill provides $11,936.8 million, a decrease of $71.8 million or 0.6 percent below current funding
The Senate bill provides $12,039.0 million, an increase of $30.4 million or 0.3 percent above current funding

 

Total Army 6.1, 6.2, and 6.3:
The FY 2014 appropriation was $2,454.6 million
The FY 2015 request is $2,204.6 million, a decrease of $250.0 million or 10.2 percent
The House bill provides $2,292.9 million, a decrease of $161.7 million or 6.6 percent below current funding
The Senate bill provides $2,516.8 million, an increase of $62.2 million or 2.5 percent above current funding

Total Navy 6.1, 6.2, and 6.3:
The FY 2014 appropriation was $2,102.3 million
The FY 2015 request is $1,992.2 million or a decrease of $110.1 million or 5.2 percent
The House bill provides $2,058.2 million, a decrease of $44.1 million or 2.1 percent below current funding
The Senate bill provides $2,096.1 million, a decrease of $6.2 million or 0.3 percent below current funding

Total Air Force 6.1, 6.2, and 6.3:
The FY 2014 appropriation was $2,307.6 million
The FY 2015 request is $2,129.4 million or a decrease of $178.2 million or 7.7 percent
The House bill provides $2,153.9 million, a decrease of $153.7 million or 6.7 percent below current funding
The Senate bill provides $2,270.9 million, a decrease of $36.7million or 1.6 percent below current funding

Total Defense-Wide (i.e., DARPA, etc.) 6.1, 6.2, and 6.3:
The FY 2014 appropriation was $5,144.0 million
The FY 2015 request is $5,188.3 million, an increase of $44.3 million or 0.9 percent
The House bill provides $5,431.8 million, an increase of $287.8 million or 5.6 percent above current funding
The Senate bill provides $5,155.2 million, an increase of $11.2 million or 2.2 percent above current funding

Additional information on the Administration’s FY 2015 for the DOD science and technology programs is here