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NWS FY 2012 Reprogramming Request Approved

The National Weather Service will receive a reprogramming of its fiscal year 2012 funds to keep forecasting operations running, two senators announced Wednesday.

Barbara Mikulski (D-Md.) and Kay Bailey Hutchinson (R-Texas), the chairman and ranking member of the Senate Commerce appropriations subcommittee, issued a memo June 20 to Acting Commerce Secretary Rebecca Blank outlining their decision.

Reprogrammed funds will cover the agency’s budget for local forecast offices, which the lawmakers said does not have enough funds to carry out fiscal 2012 operations.

The funds will also cover the agency’s Next Generation Weather Radar, they added.

The NWS previously said it would have to furlough workers due to a budget shortage.

Prior to approving the request, the subcommittee asked the Commerce Department’s Inspector General for an independent evaluation of NWS’ immediate funding needs.

The Justice Department and the Government Accountability Office are also helping evaluate the NWS’ budget situation.

For fiscal year 2013, the Senate has approved a budget that increases funding above the White House’s request and moves responsibility for satellite procurement out of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, the parent agency of NWS.

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