The Trump administration hopes to direct more than a billion dollars to NASA from a surplus in a federally funded college tuition program.
The White House sent a budget amendment to Congress on Monday evening, which included the plan to use the $1.9 billion in surplus Pell Grant money to fund other initiatives, including earmarking $1.6 billion for NASA.
Trump tweeted about beefing up NASA’s funding earlier Monday.
“Under my Administration, we are restoring @NASA to greatness and we are going back to the Moon, then Mars,” he wrote.
“I am updating my budget to include an additional $1.6 billion so that we can return to Space in a BIG WAY!” he added.
Enrollment in the Pell Grant program has dropped in recent years, leading to a $9 billion surplus of funds, according to the Office of Management and Budget.
Congress has to approve the funding change before it can go into effect.
In a statement, the budget office said that redirecting the money to NASA and other programs would not impact the students receiving grants from the program.
“This does not cut any spending for Pell Grant programs as the budget continues to ensure all students will get their full Pell Grant and keeps the program on sound fiscal footing,” spokesman Wesley Denton said in a statement.