The Senate voted today to limit further debate and move towards a final vote on a bill that includes the core technology-related items under USICA/COMPETES Act legislation that has been stalled in Congress for months.

The Senate vote to invoke cloture – and thus limit further debate on the bill – was approved by a 64-32 tally. The substantial degree of support from Republican senators on the cloture vote indicates that a Senate vote on the underlying bill – expected to occur later this week – will follow along similar lines.

If the Senate approves the underlying bill, the legislation will then go to the House for consideration.

One of the primary tech-related items in the bill is $52 billion of funding for the CHIPS Act which would provide incentives to semiconductor makers to establish new manufacturing operations in the United States.

The second tech-centric provision would authorize $100 billion of funding over five years for research and development activities in regional hubs around the U.S., and established by the National Science Foundation (NSF) of a new technology directorate.

“The Senate just took the next step to move forward on our CHIPS and Science bill,” said Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer, D.-N.Y., said after today’s vote. “We are now one step closer toward: —Boosting manufacturing and innovation jobs —Enhancing our national security —And lowering costs for the American people!”

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John Curran
John Curran
John Curran is MeriTalk's Managing Editor covering the intersection of government and technology.