October 14th, 2011 | View Archive
APPROPRIATORS URGED NOT TO LOWER NIH SALARY CAP
A group of 72 organizations and individual institutions sent a letter to House and Senate appropriators on October 11 urging them to oppose a provision in the House draft FY12 Labor-HHS-Education funding bill that would reduce the cap on extramural salaries at the National Institutes of Health (NIH). The House proposal would lower the cap from Executive Level I ($199,700) to Executive Level III ($165,300).
The letter, initiated by the Association of American Medical Colleges, expresses concern that lowering the salary cap would reduce institutions' ability to attract and retain the best investigators. Citing the interests of the nation's long-term health and research competitiveness, the letter says it is essential that policymakers not create disincentives for research careers and that they adopt "policies to ensure that America retains the most talented, productive, and diverse group of biomedical and behavioral researchers."
LONG-TERM CARE PROGRAM DROPPED
Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius announced Friday the Obama administration has given up on a controversial long-term care insurance program called the CLASS Act that was included in last year's Affordable Care Act.
Sebelius told Congress she did not see a way forward for the program, which Senate appropriators had cut off funding for in September. Republicans have strongly opposed the program.
NEW ULTRA-HIGH SPEED NETWORK CONNECTION FOR RESEARCHERS AND EDUCATORS
On October 13, U.S. Energy Secretary Steven Chu announced the activation of an ultra-high speed network connection for scientists, researchers and educators at universities and National Laboratories that is at least ten times faster than commercial Internet providers. The project is currently intended for research use but could pave the way for widespread commercial use in the future.
More information about the project can be found here: http://www.doe.gov/articles/new-ultra-high-speed-network-connection-researchers-and-educators-10-times-faster
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