Call to Action: Support the Federal Research Public Access Act (H.R. 4004 and S. 2096)

The Alliance for Taxpayer Access, whose numerous members include the American Library Association and the Association of College & Research Libraries, has issued a call to action for support of the Federal Research Public Access Act (H.R. 4004 and S. 2096).

Here's an excerpt:

Today (February 9, 2012), Senators Cornyn (R-TX), Wyden (D-OR), and Hutchison (R-TX) and Representatives Doyle (D-PA), Yoder (R-KS), and Clay (D-MO) introduced the Federal Research Public Access Act, a bill that would ensure free, timely, online access to the published results of research funded by eleven U.S. federal agencies.

We currently have a unique opportunity to create change. The Research Works Act, a piece of legislation introduced in December that would ban the government from providing the public access to publicly funded research, has galvanized the research community into acting against practices that restrict access to research articles—reaching the pages of the Economist, the New York Times, Wired, the Guardian, the Chronicle of Higher Education, and many other outlets. . . .

Let Congress know you support FRPAA

With reinvigorated support from the research community and attention from the mainstream media, now is the time to push for this groundbreaking legislation and let Congress know that students—and the rest of the public—deserve access to the research which they paid for and upon which their education depends. . . .

Raise awareness of and build support for FRPAA

  • Sign the ATA Petition in support of FRPAA. Click here to view signatories of the petition. . . .
  • Tweet at or post of the Facebook wall of your legislators to ask them to support and co-sponsor FRPAA; or, if they're already a sponsor, thank them for their leadership. . . .

Background. . . .

Now before both the House of Representatives and the Senate, FRPAA would require those agencies with annual extramural research budgets of $100 million or more to provide the public with online access to research manuscripts stemming from such funding no later than six months after publication in a peer-reviewed journal. The bill gives individual agencies flexibility in choosing the location of the digital repository to house this content, as long as the repositories meet conditions for interoperability and public accessibility, and have provisions for long-term archiving.

The bill specifically covers unclassified research funded by agencies including: Department of Agriculture, Department of Commerce, Department of Defense, Department of Education, Department of Energy, Department of Health and Human Services, Department of Homeland Security, Department of Transportation, Environmental Protection Agency, National Aeronautics and Space Administration, and the National Science Foundation.

Further information: "SPARC FAQ for University Administrators and Faculty FRPAA 2012" and "Support FRPAA Banners."

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