February 6, 2018

The Honorable Mitch McConnell
Majority Leader
United States Senate
Washington, DC 20510

The Honorable Charles Schumer
Democratic Leader
United States Senate
Washington, DC 20510

The Honorable Paul Ryan
Speaker of the House
United States House of Representatives
Washington, DC 20515

The Honorable Nancy Pelosi
Democratic Leader
United States House of Representatives
Washington, DC 20515

Dear Speaker Ryan, Majority Leader McConnell, Leader Schumer, and Leader Pelosi:

The 93 undersigned businesses, scientific and engineering societies, and universities - each a fundamental part of the U.S. innovation ecosystem driving American economic growth and job creation - urge you to reach a bipartisan budget deal that raises the harmful sequestration level budget caps for both defense and non-defense programs. We further urge you to make investments in science and engineering research a top priority when allocating additional funding by increasing the 302(b) allocations for the Commerce, Justice, Science, and Related Agencies (CJS) and Energy and Water Development and Related Agencies (E&W) Appropriations Subcommittees and increasing funding for Department of Defense (DOD) science and technology accounts.

Additional funding is critical for these subcommittees - along with a strong allocation for Defense - to ensure appropriators can make strategic investments in scientific research at DOD; the Department of Energy; NASA; the National Science Foundation (NSF); and the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) in FY 2018 and set a strong course for the rapidly approaching FY 2019 appropriations process.

Robust and sustained federal investment in scientific research is essential to strengthening our economic and national security. These investments support advanced training for students at U.S. universities and national laboratories whom businesses actively recruit for high-quality American jobs. Federally funded scientific research both at DOD and civilian agencies such as NSF and NIST, also ensures our warfighters and defense systems are well protected and equipped with the most advanced technical capabilities to fight and win the wars of the future - both real world and virtual conflicts.

America's leadership is being tested and a renewed commitment to innovation is urgently needed. Previously unrivaled, the U.S. innovation ecosystem has driven our country's economic strength and global leadership for more than 50 years, but today our international competitors are taking pages from the American playbook and investing in their domestic innovation ecosystems. According to NSF's 2018 Science and Engineering Indicators report, "U.S. global share of [science and technology] activities is declining as other nations--especially China--continue to rise."

While we appreciate the budget pressures Congress faces, federal funding for scientific research is an investment in the American economy and domestic workforce that will pay dividends for years to come - helping to ensure the industries and jobs of tomorrow are created right here at home.

We urge Congress to seize this moment to strike a bipartisan, bicameral budget agreement that raises the harmful sequestration-level spending caps on both defense and non-defense spending and to prioritize increasing the 302(b) allocations for CJS and E&W and grow the DOD science and technology accounts to enable strategic new investments in science and engineering research.


Advanced Micro Devices
Aerospace Industries Association
Agronomy Society of America
American Astronomical Society
American Chemical Society
American Geosciences Institute
American Institute for Medical and Biological Engineering
American Institute of Biological Sciences
American Mathematical Society
American Physical Society
American Physiological Society
American Psychological Association
American Society for Engineering Education
American Society for Microbiology
American Sociological Association
Applied Materials, Inc.
Association of American Universities
Association of Public and Land-grant Universities
The Association for Women in Mathematics (AWM)
Bigelow Laboratory for Ocean Sciences
City College of CUNY
College of Fisheries and Ocean Sciences, University of Alaska Fairbanks Columbia
University in the City of New York
Consortium for Ocean Leadership
Consortium of Social Science Associations
Council on Undergraduate Research
Crop Science Society of America
Dauphin Island Sea Lab
Duke University
Ecological Society of America
Entomological Society of America (ESA)
Federation of Associations in Behavioral and Brain Sciences
Florida State University
The Geological Society of America
Georgia Institute of Technology
Greater Boston Chamber of Commerce
Greater Pittsburgh Chamber of Commerce
Harvard University
Hewlett Packard Enterprise
Incorporated Research Institutions for Seismology
Indiana University
Iowa City Area Chamber of Commerce
Jefferson Science Associates
Massachusetts Institute of Technology
Michigan State University
Michigan Technological University
The National Center for Manufacturing Sciences
Northern Illinois University
The Ohio State University
OSA-The Optical Society
Princeton University
Procter & Gamble
PsySiP: Psychology of Science in Policy
Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute
Rutgers, the State University of New Jersey, School of Environmental and Biological
Sciences SAGE Publishing
School of Ocean and Earth Science and Technology, University of Hawaii at Manoa
Semiconductor Industry Association
Skidaway Institute of Oceanography, University of Georgia
SME (Society of Manufacturing Engineers)
Society for Industrial and Applied Mathematics
Society for Research in Child Development
Soil Science Society of America
Southeastern Universities Research Association
SPIE, the international society for optics and photonics
Stony Brook University
Temple University
Texas Instruments Incorporated
University at Buffalo
The University Corporation for Atmospheric Research (UCAR)
University of California System
University of Cincinnati
University of Colorado Boulder
University of Delaware
University of Illinois System
University of Iowa
University of Michigan
University of Nebraska
University of Pennsylvania
University of Pittsburgh
The University of Texas at Austin
University of Virginia
University of Wisconsin-Madison
Vanderbilt University
Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution
Yale University

CC: The Honorable Thad Cochran, Chairman, Senate Committee on Appropriations The Honorable Patrick Leahy, Vice Chairman, Senate Committee on Appropriations The Honorable Richard Durbin, Ranking Member, Defense Subcommittee of the Senate Committee on Appropriations

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