For six years in a row, President Clinton and Vice President Gore have proposed substantial increases in the Federal governments research and development portfolio to build a healthier, more prosperous, and productive future. In FY 1999, the President proposed, within the first balanced budget in a generation, the largest commitment to key civilian research in the history of our country as part of the Research Fund for America. Congress agreed to support significant increases in R&D, including:
- Expansion of National Science Foundation. President Clinton proposed a major expansion of research and development funds for the National Science Foundation (NSF). The final budget includes a 7-percent increase -- from $3.4 billion in FY98 to $3.7 billion in FY99 -- in the NSF research budget to support science and engineering research across all fields and disciplines. NSF supports nearly half of the non-medical basic research conducted at universities.
- Expansion of National Institutes of Health for Biomedical Research. President Clintons FY99 budget included the largest-ever dollar increase in funds for the National Institutes of Health (NIH). The final budget includes almost $2 billion expansion of NIH research funding -- a 14-percent increase. Scientists are on the cusp of important new breakthroughs in biomedical research, which could revolutionize the way medical experts understand, treat, and prevent some of our most devastating diseases. This increase will enable scientists to pursue a wide range of cutting edge research from Alzheimers to AIDS to genetic discoveries.
- Research and Experimentation Tax Credit. President Clinton proposed to extend the research tax credit because it provides incentives for private sector investment in research and innovation that can help increase Americas economic competitiveness and enhance U.S. productivity. The final budget extends this research tax credit until June 30, 1999.
- Expansion of Energy Department Science Budget. President Clintons FY99 included an 8 percent increase in the Department of Energys science budget, including support for the National Spallation Neutron Source. The final budget fully funds the Presidents request.
- Funds Next Generation Internet. In his State of the Union address, President Clinton said, I ask Congress to step up support for building the next generation Internet... And the next generation Internet will operate at speeds up to a thousand times faster than today. The final budget includes more than $100 million funding for the Next Generation Internet, a Federal R&D initiative which will connect more than 100 universities at speeds that are up to 1,000 times faster than todays Internet, and establish the foundation for the networks and applications (e.g. telemedicine, distance learning) of the 21st century.
- Expansion in Advanced Technology Program (ATP). President Clintons FY99 budget proposed an expansion of ATP to promote cutting-edge high-technology projects. While the Senate froze funding at the FY98 level and the House cut funding by $13 million, the final budget increases ATP funding to $204 million -- an $11 million increase over last year -- which will allow for about $66 million in new awards to develop high-risk technologies that promise significant commercial payoffs and widespread economic benefits.
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