Frank Sietzen has an update on Congressional action on the funding for the Moon-Mars plan.
Under the terms of Wednesday’s action, the conference committee expressed support for the Bush space plan, and strong support for the space shuttle and International Space Station programs.
“The conferees support the president’s vision for exploration and believe the fiscal year 2005 funding … should provide sufficient funding to initiate the process,” the report that accompanied the resolution stated. It also said the bulk of NASA’s increase was dedicated to costs associated with returning the space shuttle to flight and continued construction and operations of the station.
“The conferees hope that these two must-fund requirements will be taken into account during their consideration of the NASA appropriations,” the report stated.
He doesn’t specify what the purview of the House-Senate conference committee was, however, and notes that the space committees in both chambers have been reluctant to act on the proposed spending without additional information — which, of course, should become available in about two weeks, when the Aldridge Commission issues its report. In any case, as he notes, the FY2005 NASA budget is unlikely to be passed until after the start of the new calendar year, even if the reauthorization bill for the agency is put to a vote before the fall recess.