|3 August 1998
NATIONAL SPACE SOCIETY APPLAUDS SENATE PASSAGE OF
COMMERCIAL SPACE ACT
Reminds Congress that bill is first step in legislation needed to
open space to private sector
(Washington, DC) -- August 3 -- In response to the Senate
passage last Thursday night of the Commercial Space Act of 1997
(H.R. 1702), the National Space Society issued the following
"We are heartened by the successful efforts of Senators
Bob Graham and Connie Mack of Florida to spur the Commercial Space
Act through the Senate. They recognize, as do we, that if there is
any hope to send the bill to the Oval Office before the end of the
congressional year, there is no time to waste.
The Commercial Space Act must be passed this year. Without it,
flight tests of reusable launch vehicles scheduled for 1999 cannot
happen. Such commercial vehicles could revolutionize travel for
individuals and businesses.
Movement on the Commercial Space Act is also significant because
it represents the ability of Congress to 'test drive' new,
forward-thinking legislation that heralds the next generation of
space political activity. Loan guarantees for space launch vehicle
development, tax incentives for space manufacturing, property
rights in space -- are just some of the issues that may come before
our next Congress.
We strongly urge the House and Senate to now proceed to
conference on the Act in order to maintain the momentum established
by Senators Graham and Mack."
The National Space Society, which celebrates 25 years in 1999, is
an independent, nonprofit space advocacy organization headquartered
in Washington, DC. Its 23,000 members and 90 chapters around the
world actively promote a spacefaring civilization. Information on
NSS and space exploration is available at