WASHINGTON, D.C. (WLOX)- Mississippi Senators Thad Cochran and Roger Wicker Friday cosponsored a measure to prohibit NASA from suspending work on the Constellation Program without justification.
The Constellation Program was established in 2004 to be the human space exploration program to replace the Space Shuttle. Stennis Space Center in Hancock County is currently building rocket test stands for the Constellation Engines.
Last month, President Barack Obama's budget proposal cut funding to the Constellation Program. Obama supports deep-space exploration, but has yet to lay out a destination for astronauts or a timetable.
The legislation introduced Friday reaffirms language in the FY2010 Omnibus Appropriations Bill that directs NASA to continue moving forward with Constellation and prohibits termination or modification of existing contracts unless separate legislation is passed by Congress.
"The Congress should continuously reexamine the roles and strategies of all federal agencies, but the Senate and House have not had sufficient time to study, much less adopt, the administration's ideas about the future of NASA or U.S. manned space missions. Prematurely shutting down existing projects like Constellation before Congress has determined the policies and funding for NASA is ill-advised and irresponsible. It should be up to the federal taxpayers, who are represented by Congress, to ultimately shape our nation's future in space," Cochran said.
"The termination of the Constellation Program would be a major shift for NASA, and it could have serious implications for America's leadership in space as well as the economic well-being of Mississippi and the rest of the country," said Wicker. "We need a clear plan to continue human space flight, and we must not walk away from this program, in which we have invested billions of taxpayer dollars in critical research and new technologies."
The legislation would also waive Anti-deficiency Act provisions cited by the Administrator as justification for setting aside funding and stalling additional work on Constellation. It also requires a study to review the contracts and prohibits any efforts to cancel contracts necessary for the support of the remaining shuttle flights.
The measure was introduced by Senator George LeMieux (R-Fla.) and is also cosponsored by Senators Richard Shelby (R-Ala.), Jeff Sessions (R-Ala.), Orrin Hatch (R-Utah) and Bob Bennett (R-Utah).
Copyright 2010 WLOX. All rights reserved.
The mother of the twins arrested in connection to Monday's triple shooting in Hattiesburg is speaking out. Joyce Dawkins said her sons are being accused of a crime they didn't commit. "Labling my twins as alleged Vice Lord members," said Dawkins. D'Andre and D'vonte Humbles locked up for multiple charges following the triple shooting Monday in Hattiesburg at Bonhomie Apartments. Dawkins said, "D'Andre had Deidre Burns is his baby's mom. He was living ove...More >>
Four Pine Belt runners trained for 22 weeks for the Mississippi Gulf Coast Marathon last weekend with hopes to qualify for the Boston Marathon as a team. "We started day one and hit it everyday of every week, the whole way through," said Joshua Moore. For Moore, last weekend's marathon in Biloxi was his first. With his training buddies, Grover Brown, Arrmon Abedikichi and Dan Vega, the four hoped to all qualify for the Boston Marathon in 2019. "We trained hard,...More >>
A half-court buzzer beater from a sixth-grade girl gave Sacred Heart an exciting win over Laurel Christian on Thursday night. McKynlee Naquin took the shot just in front of the half-court line with only two seconds left and her team down by two. The crowd went wild as she drained the shot and gave her team a 15-13 win. Copyright WDAM 2017. All rights reserved.More >>