Congress: May 2008 Archives

Editor's note: Once again the Coalition for Space Exploration - the organization set up back in 2004 to promote the VSE (the one that all the big aerospace companies pour huge amounts of money into) - is asleep at the throttle. This organization is supposed to be enhancing awareness about space policy and space advocacy. Instead it is inert and behind the times.

Earlier this week the House Committee on Science and Technology's Subcommittee on Space and Aeronautics unanimously passed HR 6063, the NASA Authorization Act of 2008. This is the reauthorization of a similar bill enacted into law in 2005 which made NASA's implementation of the VSE a matter of public law and national policy. You would think that the coalition - with its $20,000 a month website - would be on top of such things. Think again.

If you look at their press release page - there is nothing about the this new legislation - its introduction, subcommittee hearings, votes - Nothing. Nor was this markup included in their calendar. What are they doing with all of this aerospace money?

VSE Hearing (Coalition drops the ball again), earlier post
Coalition for Space Exploration Drops The Ball, earlier post
Yawn - Its The Coalition for Space Exploration, earlier post
What Does the Coalition for Space Exploration Actually Do?, earlier post

House Committee on Science and Technology's Subcommittee on Space and Aeronautics Passes NASA Authorization Act

"Today, the House Committee on Science and Technology's Subcommittee on Space and Aeronautics unanimously passed HR 6063, the NASA Authorization Act of 2008 without amendment. Subcommittee Chairman Mark Udall (D-CO) introduced the bill to reauthorize the programs of the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) for Fiscal Year 2009. Science and Technology Committee Chairman Bart Gordon (D-TN), Ranking Member Ralph Hall (R-TX), and Subcommittee Ranking Member Tom Feeney (R-FL) were original cosponsors of the legislation."

NASA Reauthorization Approved by House Panel, CQ Politics

Subcommittee Chairman Udall's Statement on the NASA Authorization Act of 2008

Full Bill Text

National Aeronautics and Space Administration Authorization Act of 2008 (Introduced in House) H.R.6063

"SEC. 407. PARTICIPATORY EXPLORATION. (a) In General- The Administrator shall develop a technology plan to enable dissemination of information to the public to allow the public to experience missions to the Moon, Mars, or other bodies within our solar system by leveraging advanced exploration technologies.

Subcommittee Chairman Udall's Statement on the NASA Authorization Act of 2008

"Finally, the NASA Authorization Act of 2008 recognizes that America's human space flight activities are not, and should not, be an end in themselves. We need a results-oriented human space flight program that serves the nation's geopolitical goals in addition to advancing America's exploration of outer space. I believe that we provide the foundation for such a results-oriented approach in the bill I am introducing today. Thus, the bill includes provisions to ensure that the International Space Station--a unique orbiting R&D facility that represents a significant investment of resources by both American citizens and those of a host of other nations--will be utilized in as productive manner as possible."

Full Bill Text

Letter From Aerospace and Technology Company Leaders to Congressional Leaders Regarding NASA's FY 2009 Budget

"As leaders of our nation's largest aerospace and technology companies, we employ hundreds of thousands of Americans and know first hand the formidable challenges in today's global marketplace. We write to thank you for your past support of NASA and to urge you to enact a top-line increase for NASA's FY 2009 budget. Without this increase, our nation faces the very real risk of losing our uniquely critical industrial base and human space access capability."

Hutchison may be key to extra NASA funds, Houston Chronicle

"Members of Houston's congressional delegation, having failed to galvanize House support for additional NASA funding, said Tuesday that Texas Sen. Kay Bailey Hutchison was their last best hope for adding $2 billion in emergency aid. Houston-area lawmakers -- including Reps. John Culberson, R-Houston, Gene Green, D-Houston, and Nick Lampson, D-Stafford -- told the Chronicle that they were counting on the Senate Appropriations Committee, on which Hutchison serves, after the House leadership spurned their request."

Chairwoman Mikulski Announces Funding for Critical Domestic Priorities in Emergency Supplemental

"National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA): $200 million: In the aftermath of the Columbia tragedy, however, NASA was not given any additional funding to repair the remaining shuttles. To date, NASA has already spent $2.7 billion to make safety modifications to the remaining shuttle fleet. The emergency supplemental includes $200 million for NASA to help pay back the costs and restore cuts to science, aeronautics and exploration programs that were cut in order to pay for the return to flight."

Space race over, but some don't want to ask Russians for a ride, The Hill

"With the breakup of the Soviet Union, the concern is less about national security and proving which country's worldview is correct than it is with more terrestrial worries like money and jobs. With some irony, lobbyists note in meetings on Capitol Hill that America's former communist foe would have monopolistic powers to charge what it likes to take astronauts to the International Space Station (ISS), a program led by the United States and Russia that is scheduled to be completed in 2010. ... Meanwhile, the United Space Alliance added the Breaux-Lott Leadership Group to its roster of outside lobbyists, which already included Van Scoyoc Associates."

VSE Hearing

Hearing: Reauthorizing the Vision for Space Exploration

Wednesday, May 7, 2008 09:30 AM Archived Webcast

Statement by Frederick Tarantino
Statement by Joan Johnson-Freese
Statement by Robert Dickman
Statement by Gene Kranz
Statement by George Whitesides

Editor's note: Gene Kranz is listed as representing the Coalition for Space Exploration as a witness at this hearing. Yet if you go to their website there is no mention of this hearing nor any mention of Kranz's participation in it. No press release or media advisory was issued in advance of the event. I am told that the Coalition spends $20,000 or more per month to run this website. I do not think they are getting their money's worth. The people in charge of this website are clearly asleep at the wheel.

Editor's update: The Coalition eventually updated their website so as to reflect Kranz's presence - but only after the hearing was over. They back dated it to make it look like it was posted at 9:30 am. So much for drawing attention to an event in advance, eh?


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This page is an archive of entries in the Congress category from May 2008.

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