San Francisco Chamber of Commerce Joins New National Business Coalition On Federal Research Funding

SAN FRANCISCO, CA (April 16, 2014) – Recognizing that cuts to federal research budgets threaten innovation and economic growth, the San Francisco Chamber of Commerce today announced that it has joined with 32 other Chambers of Commerce to date from across the country to form “Business for Federal Research Funding,” a new coalition advocating for strong research funding growth in the federal budget.

“Federal investment in research is fueling the creation of jobs for millions of Americans and spurring key innovation and technological advances,” said Bob Linscheid, President & CEO of the San Francisco Chamber of Commerce.  “We and other Chambers across the country believe that failure to invest federal resources in research will harm economic growth and diminish innovation in the U.S., allowing us to fall behind our highly-skilled competitors overseas.”

The FY’15 budget appropriations process is now underway.  Beginning with this process, the coalition will argue that the federal accounts which are responsible for dispersing research funds should receive funding increases.  These increases should be at a steady rate above inflation each year.  The coalition will focus these increases on key agencies such as the National Institutes of Health, the National Science Foundation, NASA, and the Departments of Defense, Energy and Homeland Security.

The federal government has played a major role in funding research efforts that have led to significant scientific breakthroughs and new technologies, from the Internet to communications satellites and defenses against disease.  Nearly 60 percent of funding for basic scientific research in the United States is provided by the federal government.  Innovations that flow from university-based basic research are at the root of countless companies, products, technologies, innovations and jobs.

In 2013, in response to the budget standoff in Washington, Congress enacted across-the-board sequestration cuts that included reductions in research spending.  The recently enacted FY’14 budget provided an important measure of relief to research accounts by partially restoring those cuts, yet the road ahead is still challenging. Inflation has eroded the purchasing power of research funding gains made in the past decade, and funding levels for FY’15 will be determined within a discretionary spending cap that is set to increase by less than 0.2% over FY’14. This will not enable the level of funding necessary to maximize research investments.

Business for Federal Research Funding represents a strong cross-section of the nation’s business community, with broad geographic diversity among its members.  Coalition members seek to bring increased focus on the critical impact that federal research dollars have on the long-term growth prospects of the nation’s economy.

The Chambers who make up Business for Federal Research Funding will engage in advocacy efforts with members of Congress and the Administration; use communications activities to raise awareness among key business and government stakeholders, and the general public; and coordinate strategy to maximize the collective impact of efforts to increase federal research funding.

A full list of coalition members is below:

Business for Federal Research Funding Members:

  • Mobile Area Chamber of Commerce                          AL
  • San Diego Chamber of Commerce                             CA
  • San Francisco Chamber of Commerce                      CA
  • Denver Metro Chamber of Commerce                      CO
  • Bridgeport Regional Business Council                     CT
  • The Business Council of Fairfield County                CT
  • Georgia Chamber                                                         GA
  • Greater Des Moines Partnership                               IA
  • Topeka Chamber of Commerce                                 KA
  • Lawrence Chamber of Commerce                             KA
  • Manhattan Chamber of Commerce                           KA
  • Greater Boston Chamber of Commerce                    MA
  • The New England Council                                          MA, RI, CT, VT, NH, ME
  • Ann Arbor/Ypsilanti Regional Chamber                     MI
  • Minneapolis Regional Chamber of Commerce           MN
  • St. Louis Regional Chamber                                       MO, IL
  • Fayetteville Regional Chamber                                   NC
  • Greater Durham Chamber of Commerce                   NC
  • Greater Raleigh Chamber of Commerce                    NC
  • Greater Omaha Chamber of Commerce                    NE
  • MID Jersey Chamber of Commerce                           NJ
  • Albany-Colonie Regional Chamber                            NY
  • Manhattan Chamber of Commerce                            NY
  • Columbus Chamber of Commerce                             OH
  • Greater Oklahoma City Chamber                              OK
  • Greater Philadelphia Chamber of Commerce          PA
  • Greater Pittsburgh Chamber of Commerce             PA
  • CEO Council for Growth                                              PA, NJ, DE
  • Greater Providence Chamber                                     RI
  • Texas Association of Business                                     TX
  • Lubbock Chamber of Commerce                                TX
  • Greater Richmond Chamber                                      VA
  • Fairfax County Chamber of Commerce                     VA
  • Greater Madison Chamber of Commerce                  WI

 

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 Founded in 1850, the San Francisco Chamber of Commerce is recognized as the preeminent business organization for advocacy, networking and economic growth. The Chamber delivers on its mission to attract, develop and support business in San Francisco by representing companies and organizations that make San Francisco a preferred destination for businesses and visitors – a great place to live and work. More information is available at SFChamber.com.