Bolden/Elachi Plan: Take Work Away From Others And Send It To JPL

NASA is taking JPL workers for granted, Schiff says, La Canada Valley Sun

"NASA Administrator Charles Bolden, who visited JPL on Wednesday, said the agency will try to restructure its Mars program in order to save jobs and preserve skills developed during past Mars missions. JPL Director Charles Elachi explained that administrators might transfer other projects funded by the 2013 NASA budget to JPL. Schiff said shuffling jobs misses the mark. "I'm not at all comforted by what I hear from NASA," said Schiff. "It's not about substituting other projects to keep people busy. It's about doing things no one else in the world can do. If that talent pool leaves, putting it back together later is going to be darn near impossible."

Op-ed: Don't gut America's planetary science, op ed by Reps. Adam Schiff and John Culberson

"Slashing NASA's budget for exploring the solar system would be a serious mistake that would threaten our nation's hard-won and long- held leadership role, and would come at a terrible time, now that China and other nations are rising to challenge American primacy in space. Meeting that test is good for science and good for America; by exploring other worlds, we remain competitive on our own."

NASA chief pledges Mars help, Pasadena Sun

"Although he offered little detail, Bolden said that NASA will attempt to restructure its Mars program in ways that would save jobs at JPL and preserve its Mars exploration brain trust. "There are a lot of things about going to other planets that nobody knows, except here," said Bolden. "We will be working with folks here at JPL in trying to restructure our robotic Mars exploration program." JPL Director Charles Elachi said the administrative restructuring could involve bringing other NASA work funded under the 2013 budget to JPL, but specific projects have not yet been identified."

Keith's note: I wonder if the White House knows about this. This can't be a real solution i.e. taking work from other NASA field centers and sending it to JPL to offset White House-directed cuts in Mars work - at JPL. Other NASA facilities are facing cuts, why shouldn't JPL? Giving preference to a FFRDC (JPL) over NASA (government) field centers? I don't think so. Also, what sorts of promises are being made to the other centers affected by 2013 budget cuts? This is a zero sum game at the end of the day - Bolden can't promise the same thing to more than one center - or can he? I doubt this idea will ever get pass the "Oops, I misspoke phase. Stay tuned.

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This page contains a single entry by Keith Cowing published on February 24, 2012 3:00 PM.

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