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President signs NASA budget bill
Posted: Fri, Dec 28, 2007, 10:58 AM ET (1558 GMT)
NASA President Bush on Wednesday signed an appropriations bill that gives NASA almost exactly what the White House requested for the agency in 2008, but without extra funds that the Senate had previously endorsed. The omnibus appropriations bill, which includes money for a wide range of non-military programs, gives NASA $17.3 billion for fiscal year 2008, which started on October 1. That overall amount is the same as what the Bush Administration requested when it submitted its budget in February; the final bill includes slightly more for science and aeronautics programs, offset by reductions in exploration programs. The bill, approved by Congress last week, does not include an additional $1 billion for NASA that the Senate approved when it passed its version of the appropriations legislation in October; the House version did not contain that provision and it did not make it through the conference that reconciled the two versions of the legislation. The final bill also includes a provision inserted by Congress that prevents NASA from spending any money on programs directly linked to human exploration of Mars.
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