BILL SUMMARY: Commerce, Justice, Science, and Related Agencies Fiscal Year 2024 Appropriations Bill
Legislation invests in strengthening America’s economy, keeping Americans safe, and propelling cutting-edge research
Washington, D.C. – The Commerce, Justice, Science, and Related Agencies (CJS) fiscal year 2024 appropriations bill provides a total of $71.734 billion in discretionary funding.
The bill invests in a wide range of critical programs that affect the lives of all Americans. The bill provides $37.956 billion for the Department of Justice (DOJ) to keep Americans safe in their communities, uphold the rule of law, and invest in lifesaving DOJ grant programs. The Department of Commerce receives $11.1 billion to promote and support American businesses and exports, spur economic development nationwide, maintain current-generation and build next-generation weather satellites that let Americans know about severe weather, create cybersecurity standards, promote economic development nationwide, enable sustainable management of ocean resources, conduct periodic censuses, and more. To continue promoting American competitiveness through scientific discovery, the bill provides $9.5 billion for the National Science Foundation (NSF). The National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) is funded at $25 billion to explore the solar system, understand climate change, promote innovation and sustainability in aeronautics, and protect our planet.
“The bipartisan fiscal year 2024 Commerce, Justice, Science, and Related Agencies (CJS) Appropriations bill will help keep our communities and nation secure, further United States leadership in science and innovation, and assist in the growth and prosperity of American businesses. As Chair of the CJS Subcommittee, I have worked to ensure this bill gives our communities the tools they need to build a safe and prosperous future,” said Senator Jeanne Shaheen (D-NH), Chair of the Commerce, Justice, Science, and Related Agencies Subcommittee. “These resources focus on critically important needs like combatting violent crime and gun violence, supporting survivors of domestic and sexual violence, and tackling the nation’s substance use disorder epidemic. In addition to physical security, the 2024 CJS Appropriations bill addresses economic security across our country. This bill makes critical investments that will directly foster economic growth, accelerate exports of American products, enhance safety through accurate weather prediction, and promote innovation throughout the economy. This legislation also prioritizes many other important policies necessary for America’s future success, including investments in climate resilience, environmental restoration, and space exploration. As we look ahead, I’m confident that the investments made through this appropriations bill will benefit Americans and the shared security interests of our allies and partners, and we must continue to look for ways to make the necessary and smart investments to further bolster our economic and national security. I urge Congress to swiftly consider this legislation and send it to the President’s desk to be signed into law.”
“For Americans in every corner of the country to thrive, we’ve got to have a strong, competitive economy and safe communities for families to raise their kids. Despite working with some really tight constraints, this bill ensures we continue to invest in strengthening our economy, propelling cutting-edge scientific research, and creating safer communities,” said Senator Patty Murray (D-WA), Chair of the Senate Appropriations Committee. “This strong, bipartisan bill will help keep our supply chains running smoothly, spur economic development in states across the country, send Americans to the Moon again, and make sure we keep our foot on the gas when it comes to research into technologies of the future like AI, quantum computing, clean energy, and more. It will also help protect families from threats like crime, drug trafficking, cyberattacks, and domestic terrorism. And I am proud that this bill boosts funding to prevent violence against women and fully funds the Sexual Assault Nurse Exams program I worked to establish to help ensure survivors can seek justice.”
Key Points & Highlights
CHIPS and Science Act: The bill provides $11 billion to implement the bipartisan CHIPS and Science Act. The CHIPS and Science Act sets out an ambitious goal of doubling funding for science and technology programs by 2027 to help drive U.S. economic competitiveness. The bill invests in scientific research to allow the United States to keep pace with the Chinese government and other competitors in fields that power our economy, like artificial intelligence, quantum computing, microelectronics, clean energy, and advanced communications.
Department of Commerce: The bill provides $11.1 billion for the Department of Commerce. This includes programs reauthorized or newly created by the CHIPS and Science Act, including: $41 million for the Economic Development Administration (EDA) Regional Technology and Innovation Hub Program to provide planning grants to create geographically-distributed “regional technology hubs,” focusing on technology development, job creation, and expanding U.S. innovation capacity; $175 million for the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) Manufacturing Extension Program to improve the competitiveness of domestic manufacturers and strengthen domestic supply chains; and $37 million for the Manufacturing USA program. The bill also provides $12 million to establish a supply chain resilience office to identify economic and national security risks to supply chains.
National Science Foundation: The NSF is funded at $9.5 billion, which includes $7.6 billion for NSF’s research and related activities to implement the CHIPS and Science Act. The bill provides $200 million for the Regional Innovation Engines program within the Directorate for Technology, Innovation and Partnerships to create regional-scale innovation ecosystems throughout the United States and help spur economic growth by bringing together the science and technology research enterprise and regional-level resources to promote long-term national competitiveness. The first Regional Innovation Engine implementation awards are expected this fall. NSF’s education and training programs to build tomorrow’s innovation workforce are funded at $1.23 billion.
Addressing Violence Against Women: The bill contains $732 million, the highest funding level ever, for grants provided by the Office on Violence Against Women (OVW). This represents a five percent—or $32 million—increase above the fiscal year 2023 enacted level for these lifesaving programs. Funding is provided for multiple competitive and formula grant programs that support training for police officers and prosecutors, state domestic violence and sexual assault coalitions, rape prevention programs, lethality assessment and homicide reduction initiatives, domestic violence hotlines, women’s shelters, transitional housing, and rural support services.
Continued funding is provided for several OVW programs authorized in the Violence Against Women Act (VAWA) Reauthorization Act of 2022, including a restorative justice program and the Abby Honold Act. In addition, $20 million is provided for a new grant program, established by Senator Murray, increasing access to sexual assault nurse exams, which will support grants for regional Sexual Assault Nurse Examiner (SANE) training, salaries for SANEs and Sexual Assault Forensic Examiners (SAFEs), and technical assistance and resources to increase access to SANEs and SAFEs. The bill also includes $10 million to incentivize states to adopt laws that protect the rights of sexual assault survivors.
Additionally, the bill provides $55 million to support the Sexual Assault Kit Initiative, which is administered by the Bureau of Justice Assistance. This program supports multi-disciplinary community response teams tasked with developing and implementing comprehensive reform regarding sexual assault, including reducing the backlog of rape kits at law enforcement agencies.
Supporting Crime Victims: The Crime Victims Fund (CVF) provides critical support through direct assistance and programs offered by victim service providers to survivors of domestic violence, sexual assault, child abuse, human trafficking, and other violent crimes. The bill releases $1.2 billion from the CVF—matching the President’s budget request. Of this amount, $60 million is designated for efforts to assist Tribal victims.
Strengthening Police-Community Relations: The bill provides $226 million for State and Local Law Enforcement Assistance and Community Oriented Policing Services (COPS) Office grant programs related to police-community relations. Dedicated funding of $25 million is provided for the COPS Community Policing Development program, as well as $20 million for the newly authorized Law Enforcement Officer De-escalation Act. The bill also provides $10 million to train law enforcement on properly responding to situations when individuals are mentally ill or disabled and $55 million for the Community Violence Intervention and Prevention Initiative.
Supporting State, Local, Tribal, and Territorial Law Enforcement: The Byrne-Justice Assistance Grants (JAG) program is funded at $790 million, an increase of $19 million more than the fiscal year 2023 enacted level. The release of Byrne-JAG core funding to states and territories is $412 million, which is equal to the fiscal year 2023 enacted level. COPS Hiring is funded at $294 million. This funding will place over 1,400 more police officers on the streets of our communities. Funding is also included for programs that support officer mental health and wellness ($10 million), the purchase of body-worn cameras ($30 million) and bulletproof vests ($30 million), and rural law enforcement needs ($8 million).
Responding to Substance Use Disorder in Our Communities: The bill provides our communities and first responders with a total of $611.5 million in dedicated grant program funding to respond to substance use disorder, including opioids, and drug trafficking. The largest part of this funding is $445 million for Comprehensive Addiction and Recovery Act (CARA) grants, which fund specialized court docket programs like drug, mental health, and veteran treatment courts and substance abuse treatment programs administered by state and local correctional facilities. The bill also funds the COPS anti-heroin task force program at $38 million and the COPS anti-methamphetamine task force program at $16 million.
Improving Juvenile Justice: The bill provides $415 million for grant programs within the Office on Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention, an increase of $15 million above the fiscal year 2023 enacted level. The bill bolsters funding for long-standing existing programs, including $108 million for Missing and Exploited Children Program grants, an increase of $3 million above the fiscal year 2023 enacted level; $50 million for Victims of Child Abuse Act grants, an increase of $9 million above the fiscal year 2023 enacted level; and $110 million for youth mentoring grants, an increase of $3 million above the fiscal year 2023 enacted level.
Federal Law Enforcement: The salaries and expenses accounts of the law enforcement and prosecutorial agencies of the DOJ’s Federal Bureau of Investigation, U.S. Marshals Service, Drug Enforcement Administration, Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives, and U.S. Attorneys total $19.5 billion, $249 million more than the fiscal year 2023 enacted level. The Federal Bureau of Prisons (BOP) is funded at $8.5 billion, an increase of $84 million more than the fiscal year 2023 enacted level. Funding will allow for continued programming and staffing to follow through with First Step Act (FSA) requirements at the BOP and increased judicial protection services at the U.S. Marshals Service.
Continued First Step Act Implementation: This bill provides $409.5 million for the BOP to continue implementation of criminal justice reforms and programming created by the FSA. The BOP is further directed to continue to expand programs covered under the FSA, including medication-assisted treatment programs and recidivism reduction partnerships with non-governmental and faith-based organizations, and assisting with securing identification documentation and benefits when inmates are nearing their release date.
NOAA Weather Satellites: The bill includes $1.5 billion for construction of National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s (NOAA) weather satellites, which are critical to accurate weather prediction needed to protect life and property. This is more than $200 million above the fiscal year 2023 enacted level. The bill provides resources to maintain the current generation of weather and climate satellites and makes a significant investment in next-generation satellites. One-third of U.S. GDP is affected by climate and weather—affecting farmers trying to protect livestock and crops, cities relying on energy from wind turbines and solar panels, and air travelers simply trying to get home safely and on time. In 2022, the United States incurred 18 weather and climate disaster events with losses exceeding $1 billion, the third most on record after 2020 and 2021.
NOAA Climate Research and Grants: The bill provides $224 million for climate research at NOAA. It also provides $34 million for the National Ocean and Coastal Security Fund, which improves the resilience of coastal communities around the country and was eliminated in the budget request. In addition, the bill provides $21.5 million for permitting and facilitation of offshore wind power to support the administration’s goal to deploy 30 gigawatts by 2030.
Economic Development: The bill provides $466 million for community economic development through the Economic Development Administration. This includes $111.5 million for Public Works grants, $39.5 million for Economic Adjustment Assistance grants, and $50 million for the Regional Innovation Program. The bill also provides $56 million to support communities dealing with power plant closures and $2.5 million to support science- and tech-related apprenticeships. It also includes $41 million for the Regional Technology and Innovation Hub Program, which was authorized for the first time in the CHIPS and Science Act, and $5 million for a new Assistance to Indigenous Communities program to address the needs of indigenous communities that have historically suffered from a lack of investment in core economic development needs. EDA awards infrastructure and planning grants to all 50 States. The bill also provides $70 million for the Minority Business Development Agency to help minority-owned businesses grow and succeed and to implement the new programs authorized in the Minority Business Development Agency Act, which was passed as part of the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act.
Trade: The bill provides $637 million for the International Trade Administration (ITA), a $12 million increase above the fiscal year 2023 enacted level. Over the past three years, ITA has facilitated $174 billion in U.S. exports and foreign investment, supporting over 625,000 American jobs. The bill also provides $191 million for the Bureau of Industry and Security (BIS), which will support the BIS’s aggressive enforcement of Russian and Belarussian export controls and other BIS efforts to counter Russia’s war of aggression against Ukraine. It will also support stringent export control measures on high-end technologies with end users in the People’s Republic of China. The bill also provides $122.4 million for the U.S. International Trade Commission, which is equal to the fiscal year 2023 enacted level, to execute a record enforcement caseload.
National Institute of Standards and Technology: The bill invests a total of $1.45 billion for the National Institute of Standards and Technology. Funding for NIST measurement labs and research is $1 billion, a $68 million, or 7 percent, increase above the fiscal year 2023 enacted level, to spur research advances in cutting-edge fields like carbon dioxide removal, artificial intelligence, quantum information science, and cybersecurity. The bill includes $175 million for the Manufacturing Extension Partnership (MEP) program that improves the competitiveness of domestic manufacturers and strengthens domestic supply chains. For every dollar of federal investment, MEP generates $26.20 in new sales growth for manufacturers and $34.50 in new investment. This translates into $4.9 billion in new sales annually. Further, the bill provides $37 million for the Manufacturing USA Program to create one new NIST-sponsored institute. The bill also provides $214.5 million for NIST facilities, including $134 million to reduce the nearly $900 million infrastructure state-of-good-repair backlog.
NASA: To continue American Leadership in space, the bill provides $25 billion for NASA. NASA Earth Science receives $2.2 billion, a $24 million increase above the fiscal year 2023 enacted level, to address climate research priorities, including the Earth System Observatory recommended by the Earth Science decadal survey. The Near-Earth Object Surveyor mission to find potentially dangerous asteroids and comets receives $210 million, consistent with the request and $120 million above the fiscal year 2023 level. The bill also provides $1.54 billion for Astrophysics, a $34 million increase above the fiscal year 2023 enacted level to fully support the James Webb Space Telescope. Further, the bill includes $805 million for Heliophysics, which is $54 million above the request level.
The bill includes significant resources to enable the goal of returning Americans to the Moon, providing $7.74 billion for Exploration, an increase of $267 million above the fiscal year 2023 enacted level. The bill fully funds Orion, SLS, and exploration ground systems, consistent with the budget request. The bill provides sufficient funding to continue progress on the Artemis Campaign Development, including full funding for NASA to meet all contractual obligations for both Human Landing Systems in fiscal year 2024.
Aeronautics is supported at $935 million to ensure continued U.S. leadership in aviation and to invest in sustainable aviation technologies. Key NASA Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM) Engagement total $143.5 million. This includes Space Grant ($58 million), the Experimental Program to Stimulate Competitive Technology ($26 million), the Minority University Research and Education Project ($45.5 million), and STEM Education and Accountability Projects ($14 million).
Legal Services Corporation (LSC): The bill provides $560 million for LSC—fully protecting funding provided in fiscal year 2023. LSC is the largest funder of civil legal aid in the country, and its grantees serve millions of low-income Americans every year, helping them with family law, domestic violence, housing, fraud, and other legal problems.
Medical Marijuana: This bill again contains language preventing the Justice Department from interfering with states that have medical marijuana laws, ensuring that the prescribing and dispensing of medical marijuana in those states is both legal and regulated. Patients and doctors in states that have approved medical marijuana need to know that they are safe from arrest and prosecution by the federal government.
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