Charles E. Roop giving his own forecasts, weather discussions, photos and adventures for the Starkville, MS area, Florida, and beyond.

Saturday, February 19, 2011

NOAA Budget Update: House Passes Massive Cuts

I'm back on my news and soap box this morning as I just received news that the U.S. House of Representatives bill to slash domestic program's budgets passed 253-189, according to the New York Times. The vote was pretty much along party lines as Republicans fresh from their November victories wanted to show their strength of fiscal conservativeness. In my opinion, it showed their strength of witlessness.

As I mentioned in a recent blog post, this bill also contained drastic cuts to the NOAA, in which the National Weather Service falls under. The bill requested that NOAA's budget be cut nearly 30 percent according to the National Weather Service Employees Organization. The effects of this bill, if enacted, could include closing some weather forecasting offices (WFOs), layoffs, disrupt or even eliminate Hurricane Hunter aircraft missions that supply important data, and reduced accuracy and amount of weather data that's crucial for accurate weather forecasting.

The bill has passed the House, but it still has to go through the Senate and be signed by President Obama. The good news is that the cuts might have a harder time passing through the Senate because of the 51 seats held by Democrats, but the Republicans have filibuster power. In other words, it's not over. There's still a fighting chance. That's why I encourage you to write your local congressional delegates and senators and tell them to stop the madness.

By the way, here are roll-call votes from the House bill (via the NYT): http://politics.nytimes.com/congress/votes/112/house/1/147.

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