Progress for INA reform

The US Senate passed by unanimous consent yesterday S.1713, a bill introduced earlier this month by Sen. Richard Lugar (R-IN) to amend the Iran Nonproliferation Act (INA) so that NASA can purchase ISS services from Russia. The House has yet to take any specific action on INA, as SPACE.com notes, and could either pass the [...]

Sharpening budget knives

Less than two days after NASA announced its new lunar exploration architecture, some in Congress—Republicans, no less—are considering cutting it. The New York Times reports that a group of fiscal conservatives have proposed “Operation Offset”, over $500 billion in budget cuts over 10 years to pay for hurricane relief without tax increases or deficit spending. [...]

Political reaction to ESAS

Now that NASA has formally released its Exploration Systems Architecture Study (ESAS)—even though many of the details of plan had been leaked to the public weeks, if not months, ago—members of Congress are weighing in. Nor surprisingly, people like Reps. Sherwood Boehlert (R-NY) and Ken Calvert (R-CA) are supportive: Calvert said he “welcome[s]” the study [...]

Space security hearing review

I noted here last week a “hearing” last Wednesday on space security by an international organization called e-Parliament. I didn’t attend the hearing, but Taylor Dinerman did, and writes about the hearing in this week’s issue of The Space Review. He isn’t terribly enthused, to say the least, about the content of the hearing, which [...]

Keeping the vision alive

Today is perhaps the biggest day for the Vision for Space Exploration since its unveiling last January: NASA is set to release its Exploration Systems Architecture Study (ESAS) with new details about how the agency plans to return humans to the Moon. Even without the details released, there are signs some members of Congress are [...]

How to not influence legislators, in two easy steps

Take up a challenge proposed by a member of Congress Propose something that that member will never support

That’s the approach the Cato Institute has seem to have take with regards to budget cuts. On Tuesday House Majority Leader Tom DeLay was asked if Congress would consider budget cuts to help offset the costs [...]

INA progress in the Senate

The Washington Post reported Friday that legislation has been introduced in the Senate to lift the Iran Nonproliferation Act (INA) restrictions on NASA. Sen. Richard Lugar (R-IN), chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, introduced S.1713 (“A bill to make amendments to the Iran Nonproliferation Act of 2000 related to International Space Station payments”) yesterday. [...]

Senate passes NASA budget

The Senate passed its version of the Commerce/Justice/Science appropriations bill on Thursday, approving the $48.9-billion bill on a 91-4 vote. The bill includes $16.4 billion for NASA in FY06, $60 million less than what the President requested and $75 million less than what the House approved earlier this year. There appears to be no significant [...]

Budget cuts for JPL

The FY2006 budget is still far from complete, but JPL has already seen the writing on the wall. The Pasadena Star-News reports that JPL has enacted a lab-wide hiring freeze, the first in recent memory at the lab, anticipating a five to eight percent cut in its FY06 operating budget. Lab officials said they will [...]

Exploration plan to be released soon

Space News reports that NASA has briefed the White House on its new exploration architecture and has received permission to share that plan with Congress and the public. According to the report, key Congressional committees will learn about the plan Friday, and NASA will make the plane at during a press conference Monday. The article [...]