Kerry Urges More Funding to Ensure America Remains Competitive in Global Economy
Senator John Kerry today sent a letter to the Budget Committee requesting additional funds for the America COMPETES Act. The Creating Opportunities to Meaningfully Promote Excellence in Technology, Education, and Science Act takes steps to ensure that our nation continues to maintain a competitive edge in the world,
"We need America to compete and win in the global economy, and that's why we need to strengthen our scientific education and research, improve our technology, and provide 21st century job training. I've spent time with great companies like Nuvera Fuel Cells in Billerica, Ze-Gen in Boston, and Metabolix in Cambridge. I know that they are committed to keeping good jobs in Massachusetts and this legislation will help them in a fast changing economy," said Senator Kerry. "By investing in the America COMPETES Act, we will make sure that great jobs are created and stay right here in Massachusetts."
The text of the letter is below:
February 13, 2008
The Honorable Kent Conrad The Honorable Judd Gregg
Chairman Ranking Member
Budget Committee Budget Committee
United States Senate United States Senate
Washington, DC 20510 Washington, DC 20510
Dear Chairman Conrad and Ranking Member Gregg:
We are writing to request that the Budget Resolution for Fiscal Year 2009 allocate sufficient resources to accommodate the programs authorized in the America COMPETES Act of 2007 (P.L. 110-69), which the President signed into law on August 9, 2007.
In enacting the America COMPETES Act last year, Congress and the President recognized that investing in basic scientific research and education - especially in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) - is critical to preserving American's brainpower advantage so we can compete in the global economy and keep our good jobs from going overseas. Full implementation of the Act's provisions in FY09 will require substantial increases in the major functional categories for science and education.
For Functional Category 250 (General Science, Space and Technology), in addition to the budget baseline including inflation, we request an increase of at least $1.566 billion for America COMPETES Act programs at the National Science Foundation (NSF) and the Department of Energy.
For Functional Category 370 (Commerce and Housing Credit), in addition to the budget baseline including inflation, we request an increase of at least $208.6 million for America COMPETES Act programs at the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST).
For Functional Category 500 (Education, Training, Employment, and Social Services), in addition to the budget baseline including inflation, we request an increase of at least $707.9 million for America COMPETES programs at the Department of Education.
We recognize the challenges you face in crafting a Budget Resolution during these trying times. However, we strongly believe that investing in the programs listed above will pay important dividends to our economy and future generations of Americans.
Thank you for your consideration.
Kay Bailey Hutchison