NASA Reauthorization Clears Senate Commerce Committee, Includes Gardner Provisions

December 3, 2019

Washington, D.C. – U.S. Senator Cory Gardner (R-CO), a member of the Senate Commerce Subcommittee on Aviation and Space, released the following statement today on the Commerce, Science, and Transportation Committee’s passage of the bipartisan NASA Authorization Act of 2019 (S. 2800). The bill, which Gardner supported and worked to secure several provisions in, authorizes National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) operations. 

“Colorado has positioned itself as a hub of space exploration, and I’m proud to work at the federal level to bolster Coloradans efforts,” said Senator Gardner. “Our state has one of the largest aerospace sectors, and I’ll continue to support the critical work our men and women are doing and advocate for policies that ensure Colorado and the United States remain the world’s leader in space exploration.”

Gardner amendments included:

  • Requiring a review by the Government Accountability Office (GAO) of contracts with entities associated with the People’s Republic of China.
  • Seeking to ensure the NASA Administrator considers the implications of contracting with entities that receive financial assistance from or are affiliated with the People’s Republic of China.
  • Including solar electric propulsion to be considered as part of in-space propulsion technologies to be researched and developed for reaching Mars.
  • Requiring NASA to report on the feasibility of creating a potential space resources institute. This amendment is based on legislation Senators Gardner and Bennet have introduced, S. 381.
  • Requiring a report on establishing a NASA center of excellence for space weather technology.