Congress left town in late March upon passage of its third COVID-19 supplemental appropriations bill (see COSSA’s coverage) with no set timeline for return. Many are still speculating about what a fourth coronavirus supplemental bill might contain. Republicans are interested in a package focused on relief for small businesses and an infusion of cash for the Small Business Administration, while Democrats are seeking additional resources for hospitals, food stamp benefits, testing, and protective gear for frontline workers. The research and higher education communities, too, have been developing proposals for Congressional consideration. On April 7, four higher education associations sent a letter to House and Senate leadership calling for $26 billion in additional appropriations to federal research agencies’ extramural research programs to “cover requests for research grant and contract supplements due to COVID-19 related impacts,” provide financial relief to “research support personnel,” and fund additional graduate student and postdoc fellowships. Read the full letter for additional recommendations from the higher education community.
Earlier this month, the House Science, Space and Technology Committee issued a request for input on ideas for research, development, and innovation funding and policies that should be considered in a future COVID-19 relief bill. COSSA submitted a response on April 13.
Stay tuned to COSSA’s COVID-19 Resources page for latest developments.