Dear Chair DeLauro, Chair Leahy, Ranking Member Shelby, and Ranking Member Granger:
The undersigned organizations strongly support full funding for the programs in Division E of Fiscal Year 2021 National Defense Authorization Act, the National Artificial Intelligence Initiative Act (NAIIA) of 2020. The NAIIA is important to provide for U.S. global leadership in AI and enable the development and use of trustworthy and responsible AI systems.
AI is already revolutionizing a wide range of economic sectors and is providing major benefits to consumers, businesses, and the public at large. These benefits include more efficient customer service, safer workplaces, and solutions to address pressing global issues such as climate change and the COVID-19 pandemic. However, AI can also pose some risks if improperly created or used, so it is essential that stakeholders collaborate to address and mitigate risks stemming from AI. The U.S. government can meet this challenge through increasing investments in research and development and supporting the development of AI-related voluntary consensus standards.
Recently, Congress enacted the NAIIA, bipartisan legislation which established the National Artificial Intelligence (AI) Initiative to strengthen America’s non-defense AI research and development (R&D) capacity and provide for an AI national strategy. Some of the key provisions include prioritization of investments at several federal agencies including the National Science Foundation (NSF), Department of Energy (DOE), and the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST). The undersigned organizations respectfully request that the House Committee on Appropriations fully fund the programs created by the NAIIA at its authorized levels for Fiscal Year 2022:
- Section 5401(g) (National Science Foundation): $911,400,000
- Section 22A(g) (National Institute of Standards and Technology): $70,400,000
- Section 5501(k) (Department of Energy): $214,000,000
U.S. global leadership in AI is essential for America to responsibly develop and adopt AI applications, strengthen national security, and to maintain long-term economic competitiveness and growth. Making these targeted investments through full funding of the NAIIA are essential to help achieve those objectives. Please do not hesitate to reach out to us with any questions. We appreciate your consideration of our request.
BSA | The Software Alliance
Information Technology Industry Council
U.S. Chamber Technology Engagement Center (C_TEC)
cc: Members of the House Committee on Appropriations
cc: Members of the Senate Committee on Appropriations