15 U.S. Code § 5512 - National Research and Education Network
As part of the Program, the National Science Foundation, the Department of Defense, the Department of Energy, the Department of Commerce, the National Aeronautics and Space Administration, and other agencies participating in the Program shall support the establishment of the National Research and Education Network, portions of which shall, to the extent technically feasible, be capable of transmitting data at one gigabit per second or greater by 1996. The Network shall provide for the linkage of research institutions and educational institutions, government, and industry in every State.
Federal agencies and departments shall work with private network service providers, State and local agencies, libraries, educational institutions and organizations, and others, as appropriate, in order to ensure that the researchers, educators, and students have access, as appropriate, to the Network. The Network is to provide users with appropriate access to high-performance computing systems, electronic information resources, other research facilities, and libraries. The Network shall provide access, to the extent practicable, to electronic information resources maintained by libraries, research facilities, publishers, and affiliated organizations.
As part of the Program, the Department of Defense, through the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency, shall support research and development of advanced fiber optics technology, switches, and protocols needed to develop the Network.
The Director shall assist the President in coordinating the activities of appropriate agencies and departments to promote the development of information services that could be provided over the Network. These services may include the provision of directories of the users and services on computer networks, data bases of unclassified Federal scientific data, training of users of data bases and computer networks, access to commercial information services for users of the Network, and technology to support computer-based collaboration that allows researchers and educators around the Nation to share information and instrumentation.
All Federal agencies and departments are authorized to allow recipients of Federal research grants to use grant moneys to pay for computer networking expenses.