CONGRESSWOMAN ELISE STEFANIK
On Tuesday, May 19, 2015, the House will consider H.R. 1119, the Research and Development Efficiency Act, under a suspension of the rules. H.R. 1119 was introduced on February 26, 2015, by Rep. Barbara Comstock (R-VA) and was referred to the Committee on Science, Space, and Technology, which ordered the bill reported, as amended, by voice vote on March 4, 2015.
H.R. 1119 requires the Director of the Office of Science and Technology Policy (OSTP) to establish a working group under the authority of the National Science and Technology Council to review federal regulations affecting research and research universities.
The working group is required to make recommendations regarding how to: harmonize, streamline, and eliminate duplicative federal regulations and reporting requirements; minimize the regulatory burden on American institutions of higher education performing federally-funded research while maintaining accountability for federal tax dollars; and, identify and update specific regulations to refocus on performance-based goals instead of process while still achieving the desired outcome. The working group is required to consider input and recommendations from federal and non-federal stakeholders interested in ensuring the effectiveness, efficiency, and accountability of scientific research.
Not later than one year after enactment, and annually thereafter for three years, the Director would be required to report to Congress on the steps taken to carry out recommendations of the working group.
A Federal Demonstration Partnership Faculty Workload Survey found that, on average, principal investigators of federally-sponsored research grants spend 42 percent of their time on administrative tasks. H.R. 1119 is designed to ensure that more research tax dollars are spent on research instead of regulatory requirements.
 See Press Release—“Science Space, And Technology Committee Passes Rep. Comstock’s Legislation,” March 4, 2015.
The Congressional Budget Office (CBO) estimates that implementing H.R. 1119 would have no significant cost because the activities specified in the bill are generally consistent with activities already carried out by OSTP and other agencies that would probably participate in the proposed working group.
For questions or further information please contact Jerry White with the House Republican Policy Committee by email or at 5-0190.