The new chairman of the House Science, Space, and Technology Committee pledged this week to look at a number of tech issues in 2023 including quantum information sciences, boosting the government’s weather-related capabilities, and overseeing implementation of the Chips and Science Act approved by Congress last year.

“Today the United States faces a new inflection point, as global competitors seek to surpass us in research and development and emulate the success of our nation’s system of innovation,” said Chairman Frank Lucas, R-Okla., at the committee’s organizational meeting on Feb. 8.

He emphasized that the committee’s work will aim to ensure that the U.S. remains the leader in research and development, with top-level aims of economic prosperity and national security.

Among the committee’s plans are legislation to advance U.S. competitiveness “in quantum information sciences, drones and advanced air mobility, energy technologies, and cutting-edge science,” Rep. Lucas said.

In addition, the committee plans to consider legislation to improve the nation’s weather forecasting capabilities and bring greater accountability to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration.

It will also seek to advance legislation supporting the U.S. commercial space industry and NASA’s mission to return humans to the Moon and onto Mars, the chairman said.

Rep. Lucas also pledged that the committee will protect taxpayer dollars “through rigorous oversight of federal research agencies,” including overseeing the implementation of the Chips and Science Act that is putting $50 billion into efforts to create more U.S.-based semiconductor manufacturing.

“There has never been a more critical time to uphold our nation’s competitiveness,” Rep. Lucas said. “Each member of this Committee brings different expertise and backgrounds and has unique district interests. Combining those assets, I believe we can do great things for the American people and ensure a bright future for America,” he said.

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Lisbeth Perez
Lisbeth Perez
Lisbeth Perez is a MeriTalk Senior Technology Reporter covering the intersection of government and technology.