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NASA Feels Strain of Budget Cuts - Windows to the Universe

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NASA Administrator Dan Goldin speaks at a recent meeting.
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Courtesy of NASA

NASA Feels Strain of Budget Cuts
News story originally written on July 28, 1999

The United States House of Representatives recently put a damper on NASA's celebration of the launch of the Chandra Observatory. The space program will take an 11% cut in its budget, which amounts to $1.3 billion in the next year. Here are some highlights of the statement made by NASA Administrator Dan Goldin.

"The NASA team just launched Chandra, the world's most powerful space telescope. Today, we will have to turn it back on Washington to see what remains of the NASA budget."

"Year after year, NASA is touted for doing more and more with smaller budgets and held up as a model of good government," said Goldin. "The NASA employees get up every day to achieve what most think is impossible. They have risen to the challenge of smaller budgets. And this is the reward the NASA team gets? Not only is this cut devastating to NASA's programs, it is a knife in the heart of employee morale."

Goldin says the future of some space centers and programs is in jeopardy because of the sudden loss of funding. Even the new Deep Impact mission is in trouble.

"This cut destroys the technology base built by NASA," Goldin said. "Our ability to further reduce costs and increase scientific productivity would end. NASA is one of only a few investments our nation makes to ensure a bright future, a strong economy and the technology base to achieve it. Perhaps most sadly, we will lose the opportunity to inspire a future generation of children. I won't feel better until every nickel is restored."

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Windows to the Universe, a project of the National Earth Science Teachers Association, is sponsored in part by the National Science Foundation and NASA, our Founding Partners (the American Geophysical Union and American Geosciences Institute) as well as through Institutional, Contributing, and Affiliate Partners, individual memberships and generous donors. Thank you for your support! NASA AGU AGI NSF