Friday, 21 November 97 Washington, DC
1. NAS: CONGRESS GRANTS EXEMPTION -- BUT LETS IN LIGHT.
It may be the best outcome for everyone. One week after WN predicted
Congress would skip town without taking action
(WN 7 Nov 97), NAS
was exempted from the Federal Advisory Committee Act in the final
hours before adjournment. But the Academy is now required to post
the names of prospective panel members and reviewers, invite the
public to data-gathering meetings and provide brief summaries of
closed meetings. The Academy has already been doing many of
these things, but it must now do so as a matter of law --
profoundly altering the dynamics.
2. STOCKPILE STEWARDSHIP: WHAT A DIFFERENCE A BAY MAKES.
Rep. Ellen Tauscher of California's 10th District, which includes
Lawrence Livermore, is a strong supporter of the Comprehensive
Test Ban Treaty. The key, she argues, is the Science Based
Stockpile Stewardship Program -- particularly the part played by
the $4.7B National Ignition Facility at LLNL, which she says will
also help the economy of the entire Bay area. Lynn Woolsey,
representing the 6th District on the other side of the Bay, also
supports the Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty, but she charged last
week that nuclear weapons research and design is continuing under
the guise of the SBSS -- particularly the part played by NIF.
She is gathering signatures on a letter to President Clinton,
urging cuts in the DOE weapons program.
3. OAM: NO NEW CENTER -- BUT A FAT INCREASE IN THE BUDGET.
The FY 98 NIH appropriation raised the budget of the Office of
Alternative Medicine from $12M to $20M. Senator Tom Harkin also
sought to elevate it to a national center
(WN 10 Oct 97).
4. APPLICATIONS INVITED FOR APS CONGRESSIONAL FELLOWSHIPS.
The APS Congressional Science Fellowship Program has been putting
physicists in key congressional offices for a quarter of a
century. Candidates for the 1998-99 year must submit completed
applications by 15 Jan 98. Qualifications include a PhD in
physics or closely related field and a demonstrated interest in
science policy. The stipend is $46,000 per year, plus allowances
for relocation, in-service travel, and health insurance. For
complete information, go the APS home page at
and click on
5. APPLICATIONS ARE ALSO INVITED FOR MASS MEDIA FELLOWSHIPS.
This will be just the second year of APS involvement in the Media
Fellows program, but results from the first year were terrific.
The ten-week fellowship allows physics students to work as a
full-time reporter over the summer in a mass media organization.
The stipend is $4,000 plus a travel allowance. Priority will be
given to graduate students in physics or a closely related field.
Deadline is 15 Jan. Details on the home page at