On May 2, 2007, the House passed the National Science Foundation Authorization Act, H.R. 1867, and on May 3, the House passed the Technology Innovation and Manufacturing Stimulation Act, H.R. 1868. These bills are part of House Democrats' bold Innovation Agenda, and crucial to supporting innovation and competitiveness through improved basic research, science and math education, and technology development.
- Keep the National Science Foundation (NSF) on a 10-year doubling path
- Establish a pilot program of one-year seed grants for new investigators to help improve funding rates for young investigators and stimulate higher-risk research
- Encourage NSF to foster relationships between academia and industry in order to spawn U.S. competitiveness
- Further the agency's traditions of education in science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) fields by increasing funding for certain NSF education programs including programs authorized under H.R. 362, “10,000 Teachers, 10 Million Minds” Math and Science Scholarship Act”
The Technology Innovation and Manufacturing Stimulation Act (H.R. 1868) is the first full reauthorization of the National Institutes of Standards and Technology since 1991, authorizing $2.5 billion for fiscal year 2008-2010.
The Technology Innovation and Manufacturing Stimulation Act will:
- Increase funding for the Manufacturing Extension Partnership (MEP), a public-private partnership which leverages federal, state and private investments to implement and stimulate new manufacturing processes and technologies. Funding for MEP would be scheduled to double within 10 years
- Replace the Advanced Technology Program (ATP), which was eliminated from the President's fiscal year 2008 budget request, with the Technology Innovation Program (TIP), to better reflect global innovation competition by funding high-risk, high-reward, pre-competitive technology development, focusing on small and medium-sized companies
- Set the funding of research labs at NIST on a ten-year path to doubling
- Provide construction funding to complete much-needed lab upgrade
The National Science Foundation and the National Institutes of Standards and Technology have made important contributions to our nation's research and competitiveness. Supporting both efforts is a step forward in fostering America's innovation, scientific research, and leadership in an increasingly competitive global economy.