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Congress adjourned the first session of the 102nd Congress just before Thanksgiving. Among the items receiving last-minute approval were the following:

NREN.Legislation to establish the National Research and Education Network is on its way to the White House at this writing, and the President is expected to sign it. On November 20 and 22, the House and Senate each passed a final House-Senate compromise version of S. 272, the High-Performance Computing Act first introduced by Sen. Albert Gore Jr. (D-TN). Several last-minute hurdles had to be overcome and the inevitable compromises were made. Nevertheless, the bill’s provisions regarding libraries and education remain essentially intact.

Funding.Congress increased funding for Higher Education Act library programs 66.6 percent for fiscal year 1992, despite a zero budget request for these programs by President Bush. The HEA II-B library fellowship program was increased by $5 million, a level of funding not matched for more than 20 years.

The HEA section 607 program for acquisition of periodicals published outside the United States (under the HEA title VI international education program) received first-time funding of $500,000. This funding for section 607 was just in time; the Senate bill to reauthorize the entire Higher Education Act omitted authorizations for unfunded programs, but will restore a separate $1 million authorization for section 607 when the bill reaches the Senate floor next year. (The House version, also scheduled for floor action next year, would authorize $8.5 million for section 607.)

The HEA II-D college library technology program was increased by $2.5 million. However, House-Senate conferees agreed to Senate language which earmarks the II-D increase for a biotechnology information education demonstration project at Iowa State University in the home state of Tom Harkin (D-IA), Senate subcommittee chairman.

The original bill containing funding for education and library programs was vetoed by President Bush over one provision which would have restricted use of funds to promulgate regulations barring employees of federally funded health clinics from discussing abortion with their patients. A new bill with identical funding levels but without the abortion counseling provision was developed, passed, and signed after the House failed by 12 votes to override the veto.

Final funding levels for FY 1992 for selected programs of interest to C&RL News readers are shown in the table on the next page.

FINAL FUNDING LEVELS FOR FISCAL YEAR 1992

PROGRAM FY 91 FUNDING FY 92 FUNDING
GPO SuDocs $25,745,000 $26,327,000
HE A II-B lib. training 651,000 5,000,000
II-B lib. research 325,000 325,000
II-C research libraries 5,855,000 5,855,000
II-D college lib. tech. 3,904,000 6,404,000
IV-C college work study 594,681,000 615,000,000
VI international educ. 28,669,000 34,000,000
VI-A, Sec. 607 foreign jrls. 0 500,000
Library of Congress 305,071,000 322,228,000
LSCA I public library services 83,898,000 83,898,000
II pub. lib. construction 19,218,000 16,718,000
III interlibrary cooperation 19,908,000 19,908,000
V for. lang, mtrls. pub. libs. 976,000 976,000
VI library literacy 8,163,000 8,163,000
National Agricultural Library 16,798,000 17,715,000
National Archives 126,969,000 146,143,000
Natl. Ctr. for Educ. Statistics 63,524,000 77,213,000
NCLIS 732,000 831,000
Natl. Endowment for Humanities 170,005,000 175,955,000
Natl. Historical Pubs. & Records Com. 5,250,000 5,400,000
National Library of Medicine & ML A A 91,408,000 100,303,000
Postal revenue forgone subsidy 472,592,000 470,000,000
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