House Approves $600 Million for NASA in Economic Stimulus

The U.S.House of Representatives included $600 million for NASA in the $819 millioneconomic stimulus bill it passed Jan. 25. The Senate version of the bill, dueto be taken up the week of Feb. 2, contains $1.5 billion for NASA, including$500 million to shorten the gap between the retirement of the space shuttle andthe first flight of its successor.

The Housebill, the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 (H.R. 1), includes nomoney for NASAhuman spaceflight programs. An amendment sponsored by freshman Rep. SuzanneKosmas (D-Fla.) that would have added $2 billion to narrow the gap betweenshuttle and its successor was rejected by the House Rules Committee.

The bulk ofthe NASA money in H.R. 1 - some $400 million - is designated for Earthscience satellite programs and climate change research.

H.R. 1 alsoincludes $150 million for aeronautics, and $50 million to repair NASAfacilities damaged by Hurricane Ike last summer.

The Senateversion of the bill, S. 336, includes $500 million for Earth science, $250million for aeronautics and $250 million for hurricane repair and other NASAinfrastructure projects.

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