US Senators last night (March 10) passed the long-delayed $410 billion omnibus spending bill that includes $30.3 billion for the National Institutes of Health in FY09. President Barack Obama is expected to sign the legislation today. The NIH allotment would be a $938 million boost over the agency's FY08 budget - a 3% increase, which roughly tracks inflation. The National Science Foundation is set to get nearly $6.5 billion in FY09, a 5.9% increase over its FY08 budget. In addition, the Department of Energy's Office of Science would be working with a $4.77 billion FY09 budget, a whopping 18.8% increase over FY08. Republican and Democratic legislators linkurl:wrangled; with the bill's multitude of earmarks for months before agreeing to pass the measure by a 62-35 vote in the Senate.
**__Related stories:__***linkurl:Life science scores in 2010 budget;
[26th February 2009]*linkurl:NIH: stimulated but flat;
[24th February 2009]*linkurl:Flat funding for NIH in 2009;

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