House passes $6.9 billion IT research bill

The House passed legislation on Feb. 15 to authorize a five-year, $6.9 billion package for information technology and research. But the bill faces a tough road ahead before it ever becomes law.

The bill (H.R. 2086), approved on a voice vote, would authorize a major new research investment in IT, creating new jobs and infusing millions of dollars into research at federal agencies and major universities. It now goes to the Senate where it must pass as well.

However, the legislation is at odds with President Clinton's one-year, $2.3 billion proposal for IT research that provides different funding levels for major agencies. Both pieces of legislation, along with others that Hill insiders expect to be introduced this year, will make their way through the appropriations process on Capitol Hill before any money becomes available.

But Rep. F. James Sensenbrenner, (R-Wis.), chairman of the House Science Committee, said House passage "marks a great investment in the future and a strong commitment to strengthening the scientific enterprise."

"By focusing federal IT efforts on basic research, this legislation helps replenish the pipeline of fundamental research breakthroughs and scientific discoveries in the 21st century," Sensenbrenner said.

A wide range of research universities, which stand to benefit from enhanced federal grants to develop new technology systems, backed the legislation.

"Government research has fueled the engine for America's past prosperity, helped make American universities the finest in the world and will be the catalyst for new technological innovation in the future," said Rep. Merrill Cook, R-Utah.


  • Telecommunications
    Stock photo ID: 658810513 By asharkyu

    GSA extends EIS deadline to 2023

    Agencies are getting up to three more years on existing telecom contracts before having to shift to the $50 billion Enterprise Infrastructure Solutions vehicle.

  • Workforce
    Shutterstock image ID: 569172169 By Zenzen

    OMB looks to retrain feds to fill cyber needs

    The federal government is taking steps to fill high-demand, skills-gap positions in tech by retraining employees already working within agencies without a cyber or IT background.

  • Acquisition
    GSA Headquarters (Photo by Rena Schild/Shutterstock)

    GSA to consolidate multiple award schedules

    The General Services Administration plans to consolidate dozens of its buying schedules across product areas including IT and services to reduce duplication.

Stay Connected

FCW Update

Sign up for our newsletter.

I agree to this site's Privacy Policy.