House Passes NASA Budget for 2014

The House Commerce, Justice, & Science Appropriations, or simply CJS, Subcommittee FY 2014 budget, which includes funding for NASA, was approved by the full House Appropriations Committee on July 17th. In the House version of the NASA budget, every program takes a funding haircut, although some moreso than others. The House FY 2014 CJS budget now awaits a vote by the full House and then reconciliation with its Appropriations counterpart in the Senate.

While the House CJS budget takes into account the budgetary impact of sequestration, the Senate’s draft CJS budget does not. Senators curiously believe that sequestration will cease before, or early enough in, FY2014 to have little budgetary impact on that year’s funding; Representatives do not. In some senses, this makes the House budget more realistic, even honest, given the political realities of Washington today. And at the very least, the House CJS budget marks the lower-bound of spending. By budgeting for sequestration, the House reveals the full impact of sequestration. And it’s not a pretty picture for any government agency.

The House Subcommittee’s NASA’s FY 2014 budget[1] is in Title III, begins on page 57. Details from the budget report[2] on NASA funding begin on page 59,

Program FY12 Budget FY13 Budget White House H.R. 933
Science $5,090.0 $5,144.0 $5,017.8 $4,781.0
Aeronautics $569.0 $570.0 $565.7 $566.0
Space Technology $575.0 $642.0 $742.6 $576.0
Exploration $4,152.0 $3,770.8 $3,915.5 $3,612.0
Orion $1,200.0 $1,200.3 $1,026.8 $1,050.0
SLS $1,860.0 $2,119.4 $1,384.9 $1,775.0
SLS Construction $1,454.2 $1,339.8 $1,476.0
Exploration Gnd Systems _ $402.8 318.2 $299.0
Commercial Space Flight $406.0 $525.0 $821.4 $500
Space Operations $4,233.6 $3,953.0 3,882.9 $3,670.0
ISS $2,830.0 $2,958.0 $3,049.1 $2,860.0
Space & Flt Support $830.0 $925.0 $833.0 $810.0
Education $138.4 $125.0 $94.2 $122
Cross-Agency Support $2,995.0 $2,823.0 $2,850.3 $2,711
Inspector General $37.3 $38.0 $38.2 $35.3

The SLS program faces a proposed cut of $344.4 million from its FY 2013 appropriated amount of $2,119.4 million. The White House had proposed cutting the program by $734.5 million, which wasn’t surprising given the White House’s past opposition to the Space Launch System program.

The Orion program also faces a proposed budget cut of $150.3 million, but that stands in contrast to the White House’s proposed cut of $173.5 million.

The House budgeters cap Commercial Crew funding at $500 million, a far cry from either the proposed $821.4 million the White House requested or the approximately $700 million the Senate is considering.

The biggest problem facing NASA’s FY2014 budget is the disconnect between the House and the Senate concerning how much to fund the government. The House is working under its chamber’s Budget Committee’s numbers, which fund the government at a lower level than anything the Senate is considering. There is some doubt as to whether a reconciled appropriations bill that does not hew to the House Budget numbers will pass the House.

AmericaSpace will provide updates as the budgets of both the House and Senate percolate and brew. Stay tuned…

  1. The full text of the House Appropriations Commerce, Justice, & Science Subcommittee’s FY2014 budget can be downloaded as a PDF.  ↩

  2. The full text of the House Appropriations Commerce, Justice, & Science Subcommittee’s Report on the FY 2014 Budget can be downloaded as a PDF.  ↩

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