Budget Cuts for NASA :(

By: Susie77 , 3:58 PM GMT on February 13, 2012

What happens when we fight two unnecessary and unfunded wars, while lowering taxes for the wealthy at the same time. :(


U.S. President Barack Obama will ask Congress for $17.7 billion for
NASA for 2013, an amount that would leave the agency funded at its
lowest level in four years, according to sources familiar with the
forthcoming budget proposal.

NASA’s planetary science division would shoulder a heavy share of the cut. Under the president’s proposal, its budget would drop from $1.5 billion to $1.2 billion, a 20 percent reduction.

Due on Capitol Hill Feb. 13, the $17.7 billion NASA budget proposal
represents only a slight reduction from the $17.8 billion Congress approved in November
for 2012. But compared to the $18.7 billion Obama penciled in for 2013
in the five-year budget he sent Congress this time last year, it
represents a 5 percent cut.

Things could have been worse. According to a source familiar with the
Obama administration’s internal budget deliberations, the White House
Office of Management and Budget asked the agency last fall to submit
budget proposals for three scenarios: a 5 percent cut, a 10 percent cut
and a 15 percent cut, relative to the outyear spending plan submitted
last year. [Photos: President Obama and NASA]

With no top line budget relief, the cost overruns on NASA’s James Webb Space Telescope
weighed heavily on the agency’s planetary science division, sources
said. News of the 20-percent cut was first reported Feb. 8 by The Washington Post. A spate of news stories about the deep cuts in store for NASA’s popular robotic Mars exploration program followed.

Rep. Adam Schiff (D-Calif.), a House Appropriations Committee member
whose Pasadena, Calif., district is home to NASA’s Jet Propulsion
Laboratory, which specializes in executing planetary missions, issued
the following statement Feb. 9 following a meeting with NASA
Administrator Charles Bolden: "As I told the Administrator during our
meeting, I oppose these ill-considered cuts and I will do everything in
my power to restore the Mars budget and to ensure American leadership in
space exploration."

Meanwhile, late Feb. 9, the White House directed federal agencies,
including NASA and the U.S. Air Force, to cancel embargoed budget
briefings with reporters that had been scheduled for Feb. 10.
Administration sources said the White House did not give agencies a
reason for canceling the briefings.

Budget briefings planned for today (Feb. 13) — many of them to be televised or webcast — are still going forward.

NASA is scheduled to roll out its budget in a televised briefing from
the agency’s headquarters here at 2 p.m. EST (1900 GMT), the same time
the Air Force is scheduled to brief reporters at the Pentagon on its
2013 spending proposal.

This article was provided by Space News, dedicated to covering all aspects of the space industry.

The views of the author are his/her own and do not necessarily represent the position of The Weather Company or its parent, IBM.

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