Update on the Federal Research Public Access Act (sent by Rich Clark):
FRPAA has been introduced in previous Congresses and not gone anywhere, but seems to have a bit of additional momentum this year with numerous cosponsors in both the House and Senate. However, in the House FRPAA is under the jurisdiction of the Committee on Oversight and Government Reform, whose Chairman, Darrell Issa (R-CA), is an opponent of open access and has introduced legislation to repeal the NIH open access policy and prevent future mandates. Therefore, it is unlikely that FRPAA will clear that Committee or come to a full vote in the House of Representatives. There were rumors that FRPAA was going to be added as a rider to the House Commerce, Justice, Science (CJS) appropriations bill (Kevin Yoder on the Subcommittee is an original FRPAA cosponsor). Instead, the House Committee report on CJS reaffirmed the COMPETES reauthorization language on open access that directed the Office of Science and Technology Policy (OSTP) to convene an interagency working group to coordinate agency open access policies while being mindful of variations between disciplines and of the role of publishers in the peer review process. The exact House CJS report language is below.
House CJS Report: “Public access to Federally-funded research publications - The America COMPETES Reauthorization Act of 2010 (Public Law 111-358) tasked OSTP, through the NSTC, with coordinating agency policies relating to the dissemination of unclassified scientific research, including peer-reviewed scholarly publications, supported wholly or in part by Federal funds. In partial fulfillment of that directive, the NSTC has conducted numerous solicitations of public comment, and the feedback from those solicitations has been in favor of allowing public access to scholarly publications after an appropriate embargo period. The Committee understands that the NSTC is continuing to assess public comment and to develop recommendations for possible new policies based on that input and other considerations. The Committee supports these efforts and directs OSTP to provide the Committee with semiannual status reports on the NSTC's progress as discussions continue.”
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