From time to time, the American Astronomical Society (AAS), as part of its policy activities, joins with its peers to send letters to policymakers.1
The AAS is currently a member organization of the following coalitions:
- Task Force on American Innovation (TFAI)
- Energy Sciences Coalition (ESC)
- Coalition for National Science Funding (CNSF)
- Physical Sciences Education Policy Coalition (PSEPC)
- Coalition for Aerospace and Science (CAS)
- U.S. Coalition for the Advancement of Supercomputing (USCAS)
- A coalition of scholarly publications (GATF)
The AAS is additionally an affiliate member of the STEM Ed Coalition, and participates in ad hoc coalitions around specific science, space, and/or astronomy issues that arise, often facilitated by organizations like the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS) or the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine.
Most of the AAS' joint advocacy work is done in the context of the above coalitions, which send letters to policymakers and issue statements about policy issues. The AAS is often, but not always, listed as a signatory or on the letterhead of these documents. Decisions about whether or not to sign on to these documents lie with the AAS Committee on Astronomy and Public Policy (CAPP), in consultation with the AAS Public Policy staff, and is governed by the CAPP's mission, guiding principles, and strategic plan.
Letters from 2019
- AAS joined CNSF on a letter encouraging and recommending that Congress reach a
bipartisan agreement to raise the budget caps for non-defense discretionary spending and recommending a $9 billion appropriation for NSF in fiscal year 2020. (14 March 2019)
- AAS joined ESC on a letter urging Congress to lift the non-defense discretionary budget caps and appropriate $7 billion in FY 2020
for DOE Office of Science (11 March 2019)
- AAS joined CNSF on a letter to Congressional leadership expressing appreciation for passage and enactment of H.J.Res. 31, the Consolidated Appropriations Act, 2019. (25 February 2019)
- AAS joined CNSF on a letter urging the President and Congressional leadership to end the government shutdown and enact an FY2019 CJS Appropriations bill with at least $8.175 billion in funding for the NSF. (24 January 2019)
Letters from 2018
- AAS joined ESC on a letter to the director of the Office of Management and Budget (OMB)
- AAS joined ESC on a statement thanking the leaders and members of both chambers’ Energy and Water Appropriations Subcommittees for their strong, bipartisan support for the DOE Office of Science in their FY2019 bills and encouraging the adoption of the Senate’s top line mark of $6.65 billion for DOE Office of Science. (15 July 2018)
- AAS joined CNSF on a statement expressing appreciation for the Senate Appropriations Committee's proposed FY19 funding for NSF of $8.068 billion and looking forward to reaching the proposal to fund NSF at $8.45 billion in FY19.(23 May 2018)
- AAS joined CNSF on a statement expressing appreciation for the House Appropriations Committee's proposed FY19 funding for NSF of $8.175 billion and looking forward to reaching the proposal to fund NSF at $8.45 billion in FY19.(23 May 2018)
- AAS joined CAS to request robust and sustained federal investment in science in FY 2019 spending. (20 April)
- AAS joined ESC in urging Congress to continue to support the DOE Office of Science by appropriating $6.6 billion in FY 2019 for the DOE Office of Science, an increase of 4 percent real growth above FY 2018. (30 March )
- AAS joined ESC in thanking Congress for providing a historic funding increase for the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) Office of Science in the final fiscal year (FY) 2018 omnibus bill (H.R. 1625). (30 March)
- AAS joined CNSF in seeking 4% real growth for NSF in final FY2018 appropriations legislation. (21 February)
- AAS joined Research!America in urging Congressional appropriators to empower robust funding increases for the federal agencies that fuel and conduct research and development (R&D) as they determine 302(b) allocations for the appropriations subcommittees. (15 February)
- AAS joined TFAI in urging congressional leaders to reach a bipartisan budget deal that raises the budget caps for both defense and non-defense programs, and further to to make investments in science and engineering research a top priority when allocating additional funding. (6 February)
- AAS joined NDD United on a letter calling for a bipartisan deal that raises the nondefense discretionary spending caps that maintains parity between defense and nondefense discretionary spending. (21 January)
- AAS joined GATF on a publishers' statement in support of balanced public access regulations.(15 January)
- AAS joined GATF to oppose the “Fair Access to Science and Technology Research Act of 2017” (S. 1701/H.R. 3427). (15 January)
Letters from Previous Years
- January: AAS joined the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS) in calling for President Trump to rescind the executive order on visas and immigration.
- February: AAS joined ESC in commending the House for passing the DOE Research and Innovation Act (H.R. 589) and urging the Senate to pass the legislation.
- March: AAS joined NDD United in calling on Congress to provide relief from sequestration budget cuts and oppose any additional cuts to these programs.
- March: AAS joined ESC in asking Congress to complete full appropriations for FY 2017.
- March: AAS joined ESC in asking Congress to support the research enabled by DOE's Office of Science for FY 2018.
- March: AAS joined CAS in asking Congress to support robust and sustained federal investments at NASA for FY 2018.
- April: AAS joined CNSF in asking Congress to support sustainable funding growth and balance across the science portfolio for the National Science Foundation.
- April: AAS joined the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS) in urging Congress to prioritize federal investments research and innovation as they complete FY 2017 appropriations and craft the FY 2018 budget.
- July: AAS joined ESC in expressing support for the Energy and Natural Resources Act of 2017 (S. 1460) and urging the Senate to pass the legislation.
- September: AAS joined CNSF to stress their support for the passage of a bipartisan budget agreement that increases the spending caps for discretionary programs to the House and Senate Majority and Minority leadership.
- October: AAS joined AAAS to raise new concerns about the impact of President Donald Trump’s latest visa and immigration policy.
- October: AAS joined ESC on a letter to Office of Management and Budget (OMB) director Michael Mulvaney to outline the importance of the Department of Energy Office of Science..
- November: AAS joined a multi-society letter led by the AAAS to press the Senate to preserve higher education tax benefits in tax reform.
- December: AAS joined a multi-society letter led by the AAAS to press the House and Senate conference committee to preserve the critical graduate student tax benefit provisions in tax reform.
- AAS joined CNSF in urging the House and Senate Commerce, Justice, Science, and Related Agencies Appropriations Subcommittee to recommend support of the DOE Office of Science (OS).
- AAS joined CAS in urging the House and Senate Commerce, Justice, Science, and Related Agencies Appropriations Subcommittee to support sustained growth in funding for NASA.
- AAS joined ESC in urging the House and Senate Energy and Water Appropriations Subcommittee to support research and development programs at Department of Energy's Office of Science.
- AAS joined CNSF in urging the Senate to raffirm its support for NSF by extending the length of the American Innovation and Competitiveness Act (AICA) beyond two years.
- AAS joined CNSF in urging the House and Senate leadership to complete the FY 2017 appropriations process.
- AAS joined Afterschool STEM Hub in urging state education policymakers about fully utilizing the informal STEM education provisions in the Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA).
- The CEO of AAS joined the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS) in urging the president-elect to appoint a qualified science adviser.
- Several of the coalitions of which AAS is a member--CAS, CNSF, ESC, and TFAI--issued a joint statement urging Congress to support federal research funding in the FY 2016 Omnibus spending bill.
- AAS joined CAS in urging Congress to pass an FY 2016 Omnibus spending bill that provides sustainable growth for NASA.
- AAS joined PSEPC in thanking Congress for the inclusion of STEM education funding authority in the Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA).
- AAS joined GATF in expressing concerns about the Senate version of Fair Access to Science and Technology Research Act (FASTR).
- AAS joined several industry representatives, universities, and professional societies in urging Congress to ensure that the US remains the global innovation leader.
- AAS joined CNSF in congratulating Representative John Culberson on his appointment as the chair of the House Appropriations Subcommittee on Commerce, Justice, Science and Related Agencies in the 114th Congress.
- AAS joined ESC in urging Senate leaders to confirm the nominations of Franklin M. (Lynn) Orr, Jr. for Department of Energy (DOE) Under Secretary for Science and Energy and Marc Kastner for Director of the DOE-Office of Science (DOE-SC).
- AAS joined ESC in urging Congress to move swiftly to pass FY 2015 appropriations that provide strong funding for DOE-SC.
- AAS joined ESC in urging the White House Office of Management and Budget to provide robust and sustained funding for DOE-SC in its FY 2016 budget request.
- AAS joined TFAI in urging Congress to pass an FY 2015 Omnibus spending bill that provides strong funding for research and education.
- AAS joined CNSF in urging Congress to pass an FY 2015 Omnibus spending bill that provides sustainable funding for NSF.
- CNSF issued a statement thanking Chairman Jay Rockefeller for introducing legislation to reauthorize the America COMPETES Act in the 113th Congress.
- AAS joined the American Institute of Physics (AIP) and other member societies in sending a letter to Chairman Jay Rockefeller in support of the America COMPETES Reauthorization Act of 2014.
- AAS led a sign-on letter—signed by 69 other science and engineering organizations—highlighting the impact of ongoing travel and conference participation regulations on our scientific enterprise to leaders of the Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee in advance of their markup of S. 1347, Conference Accountability Act of 2013.
- CNSF issued statements commending the leaders of the House and Senate Commerce, Justice, Science and Related Agencies Appropriations Subcommittees for placing a high priority on NSF funding in their FY 2015 bills.
- TFAI issued a statement commending the leaders of the House Commerce, Justice, Science and Related Agencies Appropriations Subcommittee for their leadership in passing an FY 2015 bill with strong funding for research.
- TFAI issued a statement expressing strong concerns with the funding levels in the Frontiers in Innovation, Research, Science, and Technology (FIRST) Act.
- CNSF issued a statement expressing serious concerns with the funding levels and policy provisions in the Frontiers in Innovation, Research, Science, and Technology (FIRST) Act.
- AAS joined ESC in urging Congress to place a high priority on the DOE-SC as it completed negotiations on funding levels for FY 2014.
- AAS joined a statement led by the National Center for Science Education supporting accurate science education and opposing efforts to weaken or remove evolution from science textbooks.
- The Semiconductor Industry Association led a letter urging Congress to pass the Helium Stewardship Act of 2013.
- AAS joined the American Institute for Aeronautics and Astronautics (AIAA) and other organizations to express concerns about the impact of regulations on federal participation in scientific and technical conferences.
- AAS joined CNSF in expressing its support for the importance of the merit-review process to the effective allocation of funding for research at the National Science Foundation.