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Sea Grant Authorization and Fellows Program
On April 16, the House Science Committee marked up 10 bills. The most
important to us was the reauthorization of the National Sea Grant College
Program which was extended for 5 years and funding caps were assigned as
follows: $54.3 million for FY98, $55.4 million in FY99, and $56.5
million for FYs 2000, 2001, and 2003. (The GLTF recommended funding level
for FY98 is equal to the cap of $54.3 million.) The budget authorization
includes restoration of $2.8 million for research on exotic species (which as we
all know was cut to an unknown extent in the administration's FY98 budget
proposal). The bill (HR 437) is expected to reach the House floor the last week
of April. Other bills that also were marked up included NOAA's authorization
for R&D, and EPA's R&D authorization.
The Sea Grant reauthorization is expected to reach the House floor this
Thursday. We don't know if it will be the Science Cmte. version or Resources
Cmte. version. The Science Cmte. version would cut the Knauss Fellows program,
which currently provides two year-long fellows to help coordinate activities of
the Congressional Great Lakes Task Forces. It's a good time to contact your
members to weigh in the value of this program.
Allegra Cangelosi and Patricia Cicero.