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Marcia Smith, Sunday, 11-27-11 November 28, 2011

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Marcia Smith, Sunday, 11-27-11

http://archived.thespaceshow.com/shows/1661-BWB-2011-11-27.mp3

GuestSearch:  Marcia Smith.  Topics:  U.S. Space Policy and budget issues.  You are invited to comment, ask questions, and discuss the Space Show program/guest(s) on the Space Show blog, https://thespaceshow.wordpress.com.  Comments, questions, and any discussion must be relevant and applicable to Space Show programming. Transcripts of Space Show programs are not permitted without prior written consent from The Space Show (even if for personal use) & are a violation of the Space Show copyright. The Space Show/OGLF is now engaged in its annual fundraising drive. Please see & act upon our appeal at https://thespaceshow.wordpress.com/2011/11/21/space-show-2011-fundraising-campaign.  We welcomed back Marcia Smith of SpacePolicyOnline.com to discuss the recently passed Minibus FY 2012 NASA budget as well as some of the issues for space policy as a result of the failure of the Supercommittee.  Here are some specific URLs from SpacePolicyOnline.com that you will find useful for this discussion as well as understanding what is going on:  1) Re the Minibus:   www.spacepolicyonline.com/pages/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=2008:minibus-signed-into-law&catid=67:news&Itemid=27; 2) Re the Supercommittee: www.spacepolicyonline.com/pages/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=2016:the-day-after-whats-next-for-nasa-after-the-supercommittee-failure&catid=67:news&Itemid=27; 3) The NASA FY 2012 Budget: www.spacepolicyonline.com/pages/images/stories/NASAs_FY2012_Budget_Request.pdf.  We started our discussion with the statement that we are in “unchartered territory.”  Ms. Smith described the Poison Pill which goes into effect from 2013-2021 regarding pending budget cuts which will be significant but are not clearly understood at this time. There might be a 7-8% across the board cuts.  The cuts also impact discretionary spending, not just defense or some entitlement programs.  Ms. Smith explained this to us so don’t miss the discussion.  NASA’s FY 2012 budget was down about 4% from what the President sought.  Commercial crew was cut by about one-half to $406 million. Marcia confirmed that thought is being given to funding only one commercial company due to the reduction in funding. We also discussed the current pricing for buying rides on the Soyuz to the ISS as compared to the current pricing quoted for the Space X Dragon.  Other topics in this segment includes SLS, MPCV and crew transportation in general.  We talked about funding for the SLS and the James Webb Space Telescope (JWST) in the FY 12 budget.  Ms. Smith reported to us that NASA Administrator Bolden recently testified that the three top priorities for NASA were SLS/MPCV, ISS, and the JWST.  Marcia was asked about the OMB and their role in the budget process, specifically concerning future Mars missions.  In our second segment, we talked more about the Minibus bill and some of the specific funding project within the FY 12 budget.  Dave called in with a most interesting perspective on the issues from within NASA, asking us to focus on more than just the budget lines.  Don’t miss what Dave had to say.  As we approached the end of the program, we talked about DOD and National Security Space Policy  using NOAA and the DOD NPOESS satellite programs as an example of the challenges ahead.  Please post your comments and questions on The Space Show blog URL above. You can email Ms. Smith through www.spacepolicyonline.com.

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