The House Science Committee Chairman Lamar Smith and Ranking Member Eddie Bernice Johnson have released dueling draft bills to reauthorize America COMPETES. The House will begin to work through their differences on these pieces of legislation in the coming months.
The Committee Republicans have decided to consider COMPETES reauthorization in two smaller bills. The two bills are the EINSTEIN (Enabling Innovation for Science, Technology and Energy in America) Act which encompasses the Department of Energy (DOE) Office of Science parts of COMPETES and the FIRST (Frontier in Innovative Research, Science, and Technology) Act which includes reauthorization for the NSF, NIST, OSTP, and STEM education components of COMPETES. Here is a summary of the discussion draft of the EINSTEIN Act. Here is a summary of the House Republicans discussion draft of the FIRST Act. The full draft will be posted when available.
The America Creating Opportunities to Meaningfully Promote Excellence in Technology, Education, and Science Act of 2007 or America COMPETES Act was originally signed into law in 2007 by President Bush. The measure reauthorizes and sets the Congressional tone and investments for many key federal science and areas. The legislation covers a wide range of federal activities, agencies, and offices including the Office of Science and Technology Policy (Title I), the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (Title II), the National Institute of Standards and Technology (Title III), the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA, Title IV), the Department of Energy (Title V), and the National Science Foundation (Title VII).
The bill was reauthorized in 2010 and is up for annual reauthorization again in 2014.
The Office of Federal Relations is tracking this legislation and will continue updates.