By Allison Lea
In response to the January 14 hearing on conference and travel spending in the federal government, FASEB submitted testimony to the Senate Committee on Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs in support of employees of federal science agencies attending crucial meetings and conferences. FASEB stressed that the current restrictions on travel imposed by President Obama’s Executive Order, “Promoting Efficient Spending,” and the Office of Management and Budget Memorandum M-12-12 not only hinder scientific collaborations, but also impede effective agency oversight, and the training of the next generation of researchers.
FASEB supports travel policies that ensure efficient use of taxpayer dollars; however, attending scientific meetings and conferences are an important part of any scientist’s career. Current practices prohibit too many federal employees from attending meetings that are essential for the execution of their duties.