New Chairman of House Committee on Science, Space and Technology

The 113th Congress has begun it's first session and, as is the usual procedure at the start of a new Congress, new chairpersons have been selected for most of the House and Senate Committees. Among these new chairs is Representive Lamar S. Smith (R-TX-21st), Chair of the House Committee on Science, Space and Technology. Much of the legislation that has affected nanoindustry and the nanotech community has passed before this committee.

Rep. Smith as long been a supporter of the nanotech community, co-sponsoring such legislation as the "National Nanotechnology Initiative Amendments Act of 2009". and is a senior member of the Congressional Nanotechnology Caucus. 

Along with a new committee chairperson, the subcommittees have also gotten new chairs. The Subcommittee on Research and Education, which "has legislative jurisdiction and general oversight and investigative authority on all matters relating to science policy and science education including: . . . research, development, and demonstration relating to nanoscience, nanoengineering, and nanotechnology", is now chaired by Rep. Larry Bucshon (R-IN-8th). Rep. Bucshon, first elected in the 2010 midterm elections, has not sponsored or co-sponsored much legislation and his positions on nanotechnology and nanoindustry are as yet unknown.

Legislation affecting either nanoindustry or the larger nanotech community has yet to be introduced in either the House or the Senate; such legislation may benefit from having Rep. Smith as Committee Chairperson.

An Interview with Senator Ron Wyden

The New Haven Independent regularly covers the nanotech field, from the latest experiment in using nanoparticles to deliver medications more efficently to discussions of how nanoindustry will affect the national and regional economies. Recently the New Haven Independent posted an edited transcript of an internview with Senator Ron Wyden (D-OR), a long time advocate of Nanotech research and Nanoindustry in the US Senate and one of the Co-chairs of the Congressional Nanotechnology Caucus.

Topics covered in the interview ranged from Wyden's work on reauthorizing the National Nanotechnology Initiative (NNI):

I very much want reauthorization before the end of the year. I think the Commerce Committee, Chairman [Jay] Rockefeller and others, have felt strongly about this and have watched this sort of bump up against the schedule again and again and again …

If ever there was a bipartisan fit for the Senate right now, and a chance to put us on the right side in terms of taking bolder action in a tough international competition with Europe and Asia, this is the time, and that’s the case I’m going to be making.

I consider the 21st Century bill that I wrote nine years ago one of the most important things I’ve done in my time in public service. 

to training a workforce that will be able to fill the good paying jobs that nanoindustry is and will be offering now and in the future.