© St. Petersburg Times, published February 6, 2003
ORLANDO -- U.S. Rep. Tom Feeney, R-Oviedo, was appointed Wednesday to the House Science Committee to help investigate the space shuttle Columbia disaster.
Feeney, a former state House speaker whose district includes the Kennedy Space Center, had sought a spot on the panel and received a waiver to a GOP rule limiting House freshmen to two committee posts. He is already on the Judiciary and Financial Services committees.
"My appointment to the Science Committee becomes critical for Central Florida, not only as we go through the investigation stage to make sure that we find the problem with the shuttle, fix the problem with the shuttle and get manned space flight back in gear, but also to help create a long-term vision for Americans in space," Feeney said.
Sherwood Boehlert, R-N.Y., chairman of the Science Committee, has said it plans a far-reaching inquiry into the space program.
Feeney's wife, Ellen, works for Space Gateway Support, a NASA contractor, but has nothing to do with the shuttle program.