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I came across the following news item today which might be of interest to many of the readers of this blog: as part of a bipartisan effort (headed by Sen. Susan Collins (R-ME) and Sen. Ben Nelson (D-NE))  to reduce the size of the U.S. federal government stimulus package (currently at over $900 billion) by about $77 billion, the entire appropriation for the National Science Foundation (NSF) in the package ($1.4 billion – about 0.15% of the entire stimulus package) is being proposed to be eliminated, with significant cuts in related agencies (NASA, DOE office of science, NOAA, etc.).  The $1.4 billion for the NSF in the Senate version of the package is already a reduction from the $2.5 billion allocated in the House version.

For comparison, the entire 2009FY budget for the NSF is $6.9 billion, or about 0.5% of the discretionary federal budget of $1.21 trillion.

[Full disclosure: a majority of my own research funding comes from the NSF.]

[Update, Feb 8: It now appears that $1.2 billion of the funding for the NSF has been restored in a Senate compromise.]

[Update, Feb 12: After the House/Senate reconciliation process, the amount allocated to the NSF has been increased to $3 billion.  Thanks to Alex Iosevich for the link.  See also this Sciencedebate update.]

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