Comcast-NBC merger, science funding on Hill agenda this week

Comcast and NBC will be the subjects of a fourth congressional hearing this year when the Senate Commerce Committee takes up their proposed merger on Thursday.

It is not immediately clear who might testify before the panel's lawmakers, some of whom have expressed serious concerns about the deal. But many of the committee's Democrats, including Chairman Jay Rockefeller (D-W.Va.), are likely to cite their concerns about the merger's cost to consumers as reason for more regulation over such deals. When: Thursday, March 11, 10 a.m.; Where: Russell 253.

The Senate Commerce Committee will also convene on Wednesday afternoon for another hearing on "American innovation and competitiveness," according to the panel. When: Wed., March 10, 2:30 p.m.; Where: Russell 253.

Also on Wednesday: The House Committee on Science and Technology will consider the president's 2011 budget request for the National Science Foundation. Offering testimony will be Dr. Arden Bement, the director of the NSF, and Dr. Steven Beering, chairman of the 
National Science Board. When: Wednesday, March 10, 10 a.m. - 12 p.m.; Where: Rayburn 2318

A Senate Foreign Affairs Committee hearing could also include some tech talk, when Bill Gates testifies on behalf of his foundation about global health initiative. When: Wed., 10 a.m.; Where: Dirksen 419