As Congress Punts on Funding, SIOP Takes a Stand
Faced with another deadline to avert a government shutdown, Congress passed a second continuing resolution (CR) on November 21. The new CR extended federal funding until December 20. CRs lock in the previous year’s funding levels for federal programs and do not allow the creation of large-scale new initiatives. This temporary funding status is particularly disruptive for the research community, who rely on consistent direction and support from federal agencies. To this end, SIOP joined over 160 universities, research institutes, and scientific societies to sign on to a letter to congressional leaders. The letter emphasized the importance of federal investment in research and development initiatives and warned of the adverse impact of uncertain funding on scientific progress. (The complete letter can be found here.)
SIOP is an active member of the science advocacy community in Washington and signing onto the letter closely aligns with a key guiding principle for SIOP government relations to support for workforce and workplace research. To this end, SIOP submitted testimony to the House Appropriations Committee earlier this year, urging Congress to support $9 billion in funding for the National Science Foundation (NSF), as well as provide strong support for the Directorate for Social, Behavioral, and Economic Sciences (SBE), which funds a number of I-O research programs.
At the time of this writing, Congress has made some progress toward reaching a consensus on funding amounts to finally solidify fiscal year (FY) 2020 appropriations. Still, political disagreements over issues such as the president’s proposed wall on the southern border threaten to derail these negotiations. Our federal relations partners at Lewis-Burke Associates LLC will provide a full recap on the outcomes of these negotiations in the SIOP in Washington column of the Spring 2020 edition of TIP.