Frank R. Wolf Vote on Passage of H.R.3699: Not Voted Yet
I am writing as your constituent in the 10th Congressional district of Virginia to strongly oppose H.R. 3699, the “Research Works Act," introduced on December 16, and referred to the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee. This bill would prohibit federal agencies from conditioning their grant funding to require that all members of the public be guaranteed online access to the products of the research that their tax dollars fund. This will significantly inhibit our ability to advance scientific discovery and stimulate innovation in all scientific disciplines.
Most critically, H.R. 3699 would reverse the highly successful National Institutes of Health (NIH) Public Access Policy, prohibit American taxpayers from accessing the results of the crucial biomedical research funded by their taxpayer dollars, and stifle critical advancements in life-saving research and scientific discovery.
Because of the NIH Public Access Policy, millions of Americans now have access to vital health care information from the NIH's PubMed Central database. Under the current policy, more than 90,000 new biomedical manuscripts are deposited for public accessibility each year. H.R. 3699 would prohibit the deposit of these manuscripts, seriously impeding the ability of researchers, physicians, healthcare professionals, and families to access and use this critical health-related information in a timely manner.
H.R. 3699 affects not only the results of biomedical research produced by the NIH, but also scientific research coming from all other federal agencies. Access to critical information on energy, the environment, climate change, and hundreds of other areas that directly impact the lives and well being of the public would be unfairly limited by this proposed legislation.
The NIH and other agencies must be allowed to ensure timely, public access to the results of research funded with taxpayer dollars. Please oppose H.R. 3699.
Note to Congressional staff & elected officials reading this: this letter was sent through Contact-Congress features on OpenCongress.org, a free public resource website, but in the future we seek to compel the U.S. Congress to adopt fully open technology for constituent communications. For more information how your office can better handle public feedback through an open API and open standards, contact us -- even today, there are significantly more efficient and responsive ways for our elected officials to receive email feedback than the status quo of individual webforms. For greater public accountability in government, we must make the process of writing one's members of Congress more accessible and empowering. Looking ahead, we will release more data from Contact-Congress letters and Congressional response rates back into the public commons. This will result in a new open data source on bills & issues people care about, as well as encourage best practices in constituent communications and make it possible to grade members of Congress on their responsiveness & citizen satisfaction.