The Task Force on American Innovation, in a letter to Congressional leadership, argued on behalf of scientific research in the 2018 budget:
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Text of the letter:
As Congress works to finalize appropriations for Fiscal Year 2018, the Task Force on American Innovation (TFAI), a coalition of businesses, trade groups, scientific and engineering societies, and university organizations, urges you to reach an agreement that provides robust funding for scientific and engineering research, particularly at the Department of Defense; Department of Energy (DOE) Office of Science and ARPA-E; NASA; the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST); and the National Science Foundation (NSF).
Federal investments in scientific and engineering research have brought life-changing innovations and advances for society. From navigating the Internet to navigating our daily commutes, from improving prosthetic limbs for wounded warriors to ensuring a more reliable power grid, federally funded research has returned tremendous benefits that make Americans safer, healthier, and more prosperous.
Sequestration-level budget caps threaten to reduce support for federal science agencies and jeopardize our research enterprise and global competitiveness. Thus, it is critical that Congress reach a bipartisan, bicameral compromise that enables the U.S. to make R&D investments for the future. Absent such an agreement, our innovation deficit – the gap between needed and actual federal investments in scientific and engineering research – will continue to grow, allowing nations to advance beyond the United States. America’s role as a world innovation leader continues is being challenged, and the U.S. must increase its investments to stay ahead.
Such investments will ensure the U.S. continues to be the world’s premier location for 21st century workforce training and the global leader in innovation and economic prosperity. We urge Congress to reach a budget agreement that provides relief from the current budget caps, and to make robust science investments a priority in FY 2018 appropriations.