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Congress skeptical about NASA budget prospects
Posted: Thu, Apr 22, 2004, 5:09 AM ET (0909 GMT)
US Capitol Members of Congress said Wednesday that they felt it was unlikely NASA would get the full 5.6-percent budget increase President Bush included in his 2005 budget proposal. During a hearing of the House Appropriations Committee subcommittee that deals with NASA, the chairman and ranking Democrat both said that it would be difficult to approve the $600 million increase given the current tight budget situation, where most other departments and agencies are getting much smaller, if any, increases. In a speech during an AIAA policy symposium held the same day, House Science Committee chairman Rep. Sherwood Boehlert (R-NY) also said it was unlikely NASA would get the increase it sought. Boehlert also expressed concern that other programs in the earth and space sciences were being cut to fund the new exploration program. Boehlert did say he supported the "broad outlines" of the exploration program, but the budget concerns meant that the schedule announced when the program was unveiled may need to be adjusted.
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