WASHINGTON--The controversial Plant Genome Initiative (PGI), which was included in Congress's proposed 1998 budget for the National Science Foundation (NSF), still faces conference committee action when lawmakers reconvene this month. Although the 1998 federal budget was signed into law in August, NSF appropriations for 1998 and 1999 haven't been finalized. Thus the conference committee will determine the fate of the PGI, a multicrop plant sequencing initiative that was proposed, rather unconventionally, by policymakers on the Hill rather than by the scientific community.

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