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Beyond Small Bump to NIH, 2014 Budget Boosts Funds to Other Science Agencies

NEW YORK (GenomeWeb News) — The US federal budget deal that passed in Congress and was signed by President Obama last week restored science funding to pre-sequestration levels and provided boosts for several agencies that support genomics and biotechnology research.

As GenomeWeb Daily News reported last week, NIH saw only a small, but welcome, increase in its funding. Although the roughly $30 billion NIH budget for the remainder of the fiscal year is an increase compared to last year's level, which included the sequestration cut of 5.5 percent, it is still a cut in comparison to the 2012 level of $30.9 billion.

Several other science funding agencies, some which support a wide range of research areas that include physical, engineering, and information technologies, as well as biotechnology and biomedicine, fared better than NIH.

The Food and Drug Administration is marked for $2.55 billion, or a bump of $217 million. That amount includes an increase of $53 million to fund implementation of the Food Safety Modernization Act, and $1.01 billion to fund the Food Safety and Inspection Service, an increase of $33 million.

The National Science Foundation will receive $7.17 billion, a roughly 4 percent increase of $288 million when compared with 2012. According to the 2014 budget agreement, this boost will enable NSF to fund 780 more competitive grants and support 9,120 more technicians, teachers, scientists, and students this fiscal year.

The National Institute of Standards and Technology received a bump of more than 10 percent, or $81 million, to $850 million.

The US Department of Agriculture's Agricultural Research Service will receive $1.12 billion, or an increase of $105 million, and the National Institute of Food and Agriculture will receive $1.28 billion, a boost of $74 million.

The US Department of Energy's Office of Science will receive $5.07 billion, or $450 million more than FY 2013.

DOE's Advanced Research Projects Agency-Energy program will receive $280 million, or $29 million more than fiscal year 2013, to fund high-risk, high-reward energy technologies.