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SPIE applauds passage of Omnibus Spending Bill

Date Announced: 27 Mar 2018

Significant funding increases for critical science research and development included in bill; President Trump signs it into law.

BELLINGHAM, Washington, USA and CARDIFF, UK – SPIE, the international society for optics and photonics, supports the passage of H.R. 1625, the Consolidated Appropriations Act of 2018 as well as President Trump's decision to sign the bill into law.

The omnibus spending bill increases federal funding for research and development in multiple key agencies and departments including a 3.9 percent funding increase for the National Science Foundation, an 8.7 percent increase for the National Institute of Standards and Technology, an 8.7 percent increase for the National Institute of Health and an 8.7 percent increase for the Department of Defense Science and Technology account. Particularly significant increases were included for the Office of Science (16.1 percent) and Advanced Research Project Agency (15.5 percent) within the Department of Energy.

"It is encouraging to see the support for science and technology in this bill, for the people who strive to make our world a better place, to make us healthier, more secure," says SPIE CEO Eugene Arthurs. "Optics and photonics is key to advances across science. We are grateful for this very welcome action."

Optics and photonics as an enabling technology has a role to play in many of the Administration's overarching objectives such as increasing national security, building smart infrastructure, expanding manufacturing in the U.S., and addressing the healthcare needs of our veterans and an aging population. SPIE will continue to engage with the Administration and Congress to inform them of the many ways that federal funding of science is an investment in the future prosperity of the United States and vital for economic growth and workforce development.

About SPIE

SPIE is the international society for optics and photonics, an educational not-for-profit organization founded in 1955 to advance light-based science, engineering, and technology. The Society serves nearly 264,000 constituents from approximately 166 countries, offering conferences and their published proceedings, continuing education, books, journals, and the SPIE Digital Library. In 2017, SPIE provided more than $4 million in support of education and outreach programs.

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Daneet Steffens
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