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						Calendar No. 384


114th Congress }					{ Report
 2d Session    }                SENATE                  { 114-224
_______________________________________________________________________

        FAIR ACCESS TO SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY RESEARCH ACT OF 2015

                               __________

                              R E P O R T

                                 OF THE

                   COMMITTEE ON HOMELAND SECURITY AND

                          GOVERNMENTAL AFFAIRS

                          UNITED STATES SENATE

                              TO ACCOMPANY
                              
                                 S. 779

           TO PROVIDE FOR FEDERAL AGENCIES TO DEVELOP PUBLIC
           ACCESS POLICIES RELATING TO RESEARCH CONDUCTED BY
   EMPLOYEES OF THAT AGENCY OR FROM FUNDS ADMINISTERED BY THAT AGENCY

[GRAPHIC(S) NOT AVAILABLE IN TIFF FORMAT]


                 March 8, 2016.--Ordered to be printed
        COMMITTEE ON HOMELAND SECURITY AND GOVERNMENTAL AFFAIRS

                    RON JOHNSON, Wisconsin, Chairman
JOHN McCAIN, Arizona                 THOMAS R. CARPER, Delaware
ROB PORTMAN, Ohio                    CLAIRE McCASKILL, Missouri
RAND PAUL, Kentucky                  JON TESTER, Montana
JAMES LANKFORD, Oklahoma             TAMMY BALDWIN, Wisconsin
MICHAEL B. ENZI, Wyoming             HEIDI HEITKAMP, North Dakota
KELLY AYOTTE, New Hampshire          CORY A. BOOKER, New Jersey
JONI ERNST, Iowa                     GARY C. PETERS, Michigan
BEN SASSE, Nebraska

                    Keith B. Ashdown, Staff Director
                  Christopher R. Hixon, Chief Counsel
       Patrick J. Bailey, Chief Counsel for Governmental Affairs
Gabrielle D'Adamo Singer, Deputy Chief Counsel for Governmental Affairs
                Drew C. Baney, Professional Staff Member
              Gabrielle A. Batkin, Minority Staff Director
           John P. Kilvington, Minority Deputy Staff Director
               Mary Beth Schultz, Minority Chief Counsel
       John A. Kane, Minority Senior Governmental Affairs Advisor
                     Laura W. Kilbride, Chief Clerk
                                                       
                                                       
                                                       
                                                       
                                                  Calendar No. 384

114th Congress}                                          { Report
                                 SENATE
 2d Session   }                                          { 114-224

======================================================================
 
       FAIR ACCESS TO SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY RESEARCH ACT OF 2015

                                _______
                                

                 March 8, 2016.--Ordered to be printed

                                _______
                                

 Mr. Johnson, from the Committee on Homeland Security and Governmental 
                    Affairs, submitted the following

                              R E P O R T

                         [To accompany S. 779]

    The Committee on Homeland Security and Governmental 
Affairs, to which was referred the bill (S. 779) to provide for 
Federal agencies to develop public access policies relating to 
research conducted by employees of that agency or from funds 
administered by that agency, having considered the same, 
reports favorably thereon with an amendment and recommends that 
the bill, as amended, do pass.

                                CONTENTS

                                                                   Page
  I. Purpose and Summary..............................................1
 II. Background and Need for the Legislation..........................2
III. Legislative History..............................................3
 IV. Section-by-Section Analysis......................................3
  V. Evaluation of Regulatory Impact..................................4
 VI. Congressional Budget Office Cost Estimate........................5
VII. Changes in Existing Law Made by the Bill, as Reported............6

                         I. PURPOSE AND SUMMARY

    S. 779, the Fair Access to Science and Technology Research 
Act of 2015, would require Federal agencies with annual 
research expenditures of over $100 million to develop policies 
that provide for free public access to the manuscripts 
resulting from Federally-funded research or the peer-reviewed 
published journal articles if the publisher consents to free 
publication, within one year after publication. The bill is 
prospective and only applies to research projects for which 
Federal funding is awarded after the date of enactment.

              II. BACKGROUND AND THE NEED FOR LEGISLATION

    Each year the Federal Government funds billions of dollars 
in basic and applied research.\1\ As part of the research 
process, researchers generally summarize their results in 
articles that are peer-reviewed by relevant scientific experts. 
The end product of this process is typically published in an 
academic journal. Usually, to gain access to these articles 
consumers must pay a one-time fee or have a subscription to the 
academic journal publishing the article.\2\
---------------------------------------------------------------------------
    \1\NIH Budget--About NIH--National Institutes of Health (Jan. 20, 
2016), http://www.nih.gov/about-nih/what-we-do/budget.
    \2\Ian Sample, Harvard University says it can't afford journal 
publishers' prices, The Guardian (Apr. 24, 2012, 12:45 PM), https://
www.theguardian.com/science/2012/apr/24/harvard-university-journal-
publishers-prices.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Because American taxpayers fund this research, it is 
important that they have free access to the results of the 
research. Over the past decade, there has been an accelerating 
recognition of the opportunity to increase the social and 
economic return on research by expanding the free accessibility 
of scientific articles to the general public.\3\
---------------------------------------------------------------------------
    \3\The Committee for Economic Development, The Future of Taxpayer-
Funded Research: Who Will Control Access to the Results, 9 (2012), 
available at https://www.ced.org/pdf/The-Future-of-Taxpayer-Funded-
Research.pdf.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------
    In 2008, Congress directed the National Institutes of 
Health (NIH) to require the deposit of manuscripts that 
summarize the findings of research funded by NIH into PubMed 
Central (PMC),\4\ a free, Internet-accessible archive of full 
text articles from peer-reviewed biomedical journals.\5\ The 
NIH is the world's largest funder of biomedical research, 
funding approximately $30 billion per year in basic and applied 
research.\6\ Approximately 100,000 articles are published each 
year reporting on this research.\7\ The 2008 requirement is a 
term and condition of extramural grants and contracts 
awarded.\8\ Since this policy was implemented, an average of 
6,500 NIH-funded articles per month have been added to the 
database through a combination of author and publisher 
submissions.\9\ The manuscripts are made freely available to 
the public after an embargo period, which cannot exceed 12 
months.\10\ This database, which now contains more than 3.6 
million research articles and is used by more than 1 million 
people per day,\11\ provides the NIH--and the public--with a 
comprehensive collection of peer-reviewed articles summarizing 
NIH-funded research.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------
    \4\Pub. L. No. 110-161, Division G, Title II, Section 218 
(Consolidated Appropriations Act, 2008).
    \5\PMC Overview, Free Access: A Core Principle of PMC (Sept. 18, 
2015), http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/about/intro/.
    \6\NIH Budget--About NIH--National Institutes of Health (Jan. 20, 
2016), http://www.nih.gov/about-nih/what-we-do/budget.
    \7\National Institutes of Health, The NIH Public Access Policy 
(Apr. 2012), http://publicaccess.nih.gov/
public_access_policy_implications_2012.pdf.
    \8\National Institutes of Health, Plan for Increasing Access to 
Scientific Publications and Digital Scientific Data from NIH Funded 
Scientific Research (Feb. 2015), available at http://grants.nih.gov/
grants/NIH-Public-Access-Plan.pdf.
    \9\NIHMS Statistics: Monthly Aggregate Submission Statistic (Jan. 
20, 2016), http://nihms.nih.gov/stats/.
    \10\Id.
    \11\U.S. National Library of Medicine, PubMed Central (Jan. 20, 
2016), http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------
    With input from the National Science and Technology 
Council, on February 22, 2013, the Office of Science and 
Technology in the Executive Office of the President instructed 
each Federal agency with over $100 million in annual research 
and development expenditures to develop a plan supporting 
increased public access to the results of Federally-funded 
research.\12\ The directive set specific objectives for each 
agency to follow while it developed its plan.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------
    \12\Memorandum For The Heads of Executive Departments and Agencies, 
from John P. Holdren, Director of White House Office of Science and 
Technology (Feb. 22, 2013), available at https://www.whitehouse.gov/
sites/default/files/microsites/ostp/ostp_public_
access_memo_2013.pdf.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------
    The Fair Access to Science and Technology Research Act of 
2015 builds upon the 2013 directive and the 2008 requirement 
for NIH by requiring all agencies with annual research 
expenditures of over $100 million to develop policies that 
provide for free public access to the manuscripts of research 
generated from taxpayer-funded grants. If the publisher of the 
research consents, the peer-reviewed articles are posted as 
well.
    Recognizing the different business models used by 
publishers that manage the peer review process and the editing 
and distribution of research articles, the legislation provides 
for a maximum one-year embargo after publication before 
articles resulting from Federally-funded research must be made 
freely available online. It provides a process by which 
stakeholders can petition to adjust the embargo period, and it 
exempts certain types of research output from public release.
    The bill also requires the Government Accountability Office 
(GAO) to report to Congress on the new process for public 
access to taxpayer-funded research.

                        III. LEGISLATIVE HISTORY

    S. 779, the Fair Access to Science and Technology Research 
Act of 2015, was introduced on March 18, 2015, by Senators John 
Cornyn and Ron Wyden, and was referred to the Committee on 
Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs. Senators Ed Markey 
and Brian Schatz were added as co-sponsors to this bill on July 
22, 2015.
    The Committee considered the bill at a July 29, 2015, 
business meeting and ordered the bill reported favorably by 
voice vote, as amended by a substitute amendment offered by 
Senators Johnson and Carper. Members present for the vote were 
Senators Johnson, Portman, Lankford, Ernst, Sasse, Carper, 
Baldwin, Heitkamp, and Peters.

        IV. SECTION-BY-SECTION ANALYSIS OF THE BILL, AS REPORTED

Section 1. Short title

    This section provides the bill's short title, the ``Fair 
Access to Science and Technology Research Act of 2015.''

Section 2. Findings

    This section states five Congressional findings related to 
the value of Federally-funded research to the general public 
and the scientific community.

Section 3. Definition of Federal agency

    This section defines the term ``Federal Agency''.

Section 4. Federal research public access policy

    Section 4 requires Federal agencies with over $100,000,000 
in extramural research expenditures to develop a Federal 
research public access policy. Each policy must include the 
following requirements: (1) submit an electronic version of the 
final manuscript or original research papers to a digital 
repository; (2) incorporate changes from the peer review 
publication process; (3) replace the final manuscript with the 
final published version if certain conditions are met; (4) 
provide free online public access to the final peer-reviewed 
manuscript or published version within an appropriate time 
period; (5) allow members of the public and other stakeholders 
to request to adjust the time period before a final peer 
reviewed manuscript is made publicly available; (6) provide 
research papers in a format that enable reuse of the research 
and computational analysis; (7) improve the ability of the 
public to locate and access research papers made accessible 
under this policy; and (8) provide long-term preservation and 
free public access to published research findings.
    This section also specifies to whom agency public access 
policies apply and provides for exclusions to certain types of 
scientific information this policy shall not apply to, 
including research progress reports and presentations at 
professional meetings or conferences; laboratory notes, 
preliminary data analyses, notes of the author, phone logs, or 
other information used to produce final manuscripts; and 
classified research, research resulting in works that generate 
revenue or royalties for authors (e.g., books) or patentable 
discoveries, and authors who do not submit their work to a 
journal or works that are rejected by journals.
    The bill expressly states that it shall not be construed to 
affect any rights under Federal copyright, patent, or trademark 
laws under the provisions of titles 17 and 35, United States 
Code. The language in section 4(e) also ensures agencies 
implement public access policies in a manner consistent with 
copyright law.
    Finally, section 4 provides for a GAO report to be 
published no later than three years after the date of the 
enactment and every five years thereafter. The report shall 
include an (1) analysis of the period between the date on which 
each paper becomes publicly available in a journal and the date 
on which the paper is in the online repository of the 
applicable Federal agency; and (2) examines the effectiveness 
of the Federal research public access policy in providing the 
public with free online access to papers on Federally funded 
research. In doing so, the report shall provide an analysis on 
whether the current legislation is effective at enabling 
productive reuse of the research and computational analysis by 
state-of-the-art technologies; and examine whether such 
research papers should include a royalty-free copyright license 
that permits the reuse of those research papers, on the 
condition that attribution is given to the author or authors of 
the research.

                   V. EVALUATION OF REGULATORY IMPACT

    Pursuant to the requirements of paragraph 11(b) of rule 
XXVI of the Standing Rules of the Senate, the Committee has 
considered the regulatory impact of this bill and determined 
that the bill will have no regulatory impact within the meaning 
of the rules. The Committee agrees with the Congressional 
Budget Office's statement that the bill contains no 
intergovernmental or private-sector mandates as defined in the 
Unfunded Mandates Reform Act (UMRA) and would impose no costs 
on state, local, or tribal governments.

             VI. CONGRESSIONAL BUDGET OFFICE COST ESTIMATE

                                                   August 25, 2015.
Hon. Ron Johnson, Chairman,
Committee on Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs,
U.S. Senate, Washington, DC.
    Dear Mr. Chairman: The Congressional Budget Office has 
prepared the enclosed cost estimate for S. 779, the Fair Access 
to Science and Technology Research Act of 2015.
    If you wish further details on this estimate, we will be 
pleased to provide them. The CBO staff contact is Matthew 
Pickford.
            Sincerely,
                                                        Keith Hall.
    Enclosure.

S. 779--Fair Access to Science and Technology Research Act of 2015

    S. 779 would require federal agencies that spend $100 
million or more annually on extramural research activities to 
make the results of such research freely available on the 
Internet. The bill also would direct the Government 
Accountability Office (GAO) to issue reports on the 
effectiveness of this bill in making government research 
available to the public.
    CBO estimates that implementing S. 779 would not have a 
significant federal cost. The bill could affect direct spending 
by agencies not funded through annual appropriations; 
therefore, pay-as-you-go procedures apply. CBO estimates, 
however, that any net increase in spending by those agencies 
would not be significant. Enacting S. 779 would not affect 
revenues.
    Most of the provisions of the bill would codify and expand 
current policies and practices of federal agencies. A 
memorandum from the Office of Science and Technology Policy 
dated February 22, 2013, included a requirement that agencies 
develop and implement plans to make research funded by the 
federal government more widely available to the public. 
Consequently, CBO estimates that implementing this bill would 
not significantly increase the workload or administrative costs 
of federal agencies.
    S. 779 contains no intergovernmental or private-sector 
mandates as defined in the Unfunded Mandates Reform Act. Any 
costs incurred by public entities, such as public universities 
and research institutions participating in federal research 
programs would be incurred as conditions of receiving federal 
assistance.
    The CBO staff contact for this estimate is Matthew 
Pickford. This estimate was approved by H. Samuel Papenfuss, 
Deputy Assistant Director for Budget Analysis.

       VII. CHANGES IN EXISTING LAW MADE BY THE BILL, AS REPORTED

    Because this legislation would not repeal or amend any 
provision of current law, it would make no changes in existing 
law within the meaning of clauses (a) and (b) of paragraph 12 
of rule XXVI of the Standing Rules of the Senate.

                                  [all]