Universities Warn Of ‘Blunt’ Budget Cuts | Chemical & Engineering News
Volume 90 Issue 29 | p. 36 | Concentrates
Issue Date: July 16, 2012

Universities Warn Of ‘Blunt’ Budget Cuts

Department: Government & Policy | Collection: Economy
Keywords: universities, education, federal budget, research, science

President Barack Obama and Congress should act soon to prevent “indiscriminate” federal budget cuts scheduled for January 2013 or risk damage to the country’s education system and scientific research, says a letter from 152 university chancellors and presidents. More than $1 trillion in mandatory budget cuts, called sequestration, were enacted when a bipartisan congressional panel failed to come to a budget agreement last November. “Sequestration is an undiscerning and blunt budget tool that would substantially harm our nation’s future by blindly slashing valuable investments,” says the letter from university leaders in 50 states and the District of Columbia. Instead, politicians need to find a deficit reduction strategy that includes tax reform and cuts to entitlement programs such as Medicaid and Social Security rather than cutting 8–10% from discretionary programs, the year-to-year funding that includes almost all science and education funding. “Americans know that investments in education and scientific research pay long-term dividends,” the letter says. “We urge you to show America and the world that our country’s political system is capable of solving serious problems.”

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