May 23, 2017
On May 23, President Donald Trump unveiled his full budget request to Congress for fiscal year (FY) 2018. The spending plan elaborates on the FY 2018 “skinny” budget proposal that the White House released this past March, which called for numerous cuts to federal science agencies but did not include specific numbers for some of the agencies.
The proposed cuts to the science agencies reflect a broader intent to decrease non-defense spending, which would effectively offset a proportional increase in defense spending to fund the administration’s plans to build our nation’s military resources and border security.
The President’s request includes funding the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) at $19.092 billion, a small decrease of 2.85% from the enacted amount in the FY 2017 omnibus appropriations bill. It also funds the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) at $4.775 billion, and the National Science Foundation (NSF) at $6.653 billion, which are respective decreases of 15.86% and 10.96%. The President’s budget request eliminates NASA’s and NOAA’s Office of Education.
The U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) has a 15% decrease with funding at $922.2 million. The Bureau of Ocean Management (BOEM) and the Bureau of Safety and Environmental Enforcement (BSEE) both receive slight increases in the President’s FY 2018 request, while the National Parks Service is funded at $3.26 million, which is an increase of 11.2% from FY 2017 levels. The Department of Energy (DOE) is funded at $28.042 million, an 8.9% decrease from the FY 2017 enacted level.
Annual presidential budget requests only provide recommendations to Congress and are not bills that can be signed into law. The House and Senate appropriations committees will write their own spending bills, which must pass both chambers and be signed by the President before the end of September to avoid a government shutdown or the need for a continuing resolution.
For more details, view our breakdown of the President’s request: Overview of FY 2018 Appropriations
Sources: American Association for the Advancement of Science, National Aeronautics and Space Administration, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, National Science Foundation, U.S. Department of the Interior, White House Office of Management and Budget