On Friday, the “Research Investment to Spark the Economy (RISE) Act” was reintroduced in both the House and Senate. The RISE Act authorizes nearly $25 billion in relief for research workforce and institutions at American institutes of higher education. As stated in Senator Markey’s press release, “the people who comprise the research workforce – graduate students, postdocs, principal investigators, and technical support staff – face financial and other hardships from the disruption of their research activities. The RISE Act will provide necessary relief to preserve the current scientific workforce and ensure that the United States is prepared to continue our global scientific leadership once this crisis ends”
The bills were reintroduced by Senators Markey (D-MA), Tillis (R-NC), Peters (D-MI), and Collins (R-ME) in the Senate; and Representatives DeGette (CO-01), Upton (MI-06), Johnson (TX-30), Eshoo (CA-18) and Gonzalez (OH-16) in the House of Representatives.
Originally introduced in the 116th Congress in the Fall of 2020, the bill never received a vote in the full Senate; however, it was marked up favorably by the Senate Commerce Committee. On the House side, the bill did not progress beyond the committee level. The RISE Act is the higher education community’s main effort to attain some form of federal relief for the research institutions that have been disrupted due to the pandemic. CRA endorsed the bill in 2020 and will endorse the reintroduced bill as well.