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Frustrated Bolden Urges Congress to Fund Commercial Crew, Announces $490 Million Contract Modification With Russia

August 6, 2015

Under Wednesday’s contract extension with Roscosmos, the Soyuz TMA-M and Soyuz MS spacecraft will continue to deliver U.S. astronauts to the International Space Station (ISS), potentially…

Sourced through Scoop.it from: www.americaspace.com

Bolden puts underfunding of Commercial Crew in stark terms. We are sending more money to Russia to launch our astronauts than it would cost to fund Commercial Crew at the level requested by the Administration.

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2 Comments leave one →
  1. Joe permalink
    August 6, 2015 5:20 pm

    The situation is more complex than Administrator Bolden would portray it.

    Every year the Administration “fully funds” the “Commercial” Crew program at the expense of SLS/Orion. Every year the Congress (on a bi-partisan basis) puts the money back in SLS/Orion leading to the “under funding” of “Commercial” Crew. This restoration of funds (as Jim Hillhouse noted in the above referenced article) is to bring the funding for SLS/Orion into line with Public Law 111–267 (42 U.S.C. 18323) which is supposed to be the governing law – actually following the law (signed by the current President), what a concept!

    This kabuki dance take place every year in spite of the fact that the amount of money in question is about 0.01% of the yearly Federal Budget.

    If the Administration actually cared whether or not “Commercial” Crew is fully funded they could come up with the extra money. The obvious real objective is to try and cut SLS/Orion funding below the previously agreed to levels in order to damage the programs as much as possible

    Additionally it sets up a false argument of SLS/Orion vs. “Commercial” to divide any politically active space advocates.

    Sadly this kind of political chicanery is working all to well

    • August 6, 2015 8:49 pm

      Thanks for your comment, Joe. As you say, the situation is more complex than it appears on the surface. It does seem that Administration support for Commercial Crew is not particularly strong.

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