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Welcome and thank you for your question!Since the space shuttle retired in July 2011, NASA has been dependent on Russian Soyuz vehicles to perform this taxi service (the same is true with Japan). It costs $60 million dollars per person. This arrangement, however, is only a temporary one.NASA wants several different private spaceships to be up and running by 2017. This is why, in the 2013 budget, President Obama proposed $830 million for NASA's Commercial Crew Development (CCDev) program. This is NASA's effort to encourage American private spaceflight companies to start ferrying astronauts to and from the International Space Station. Once these American private spaceships are in place, the US will no longer have to use the Russian Soyuz vehicles.Now, keep in mind that Congress is the one that's being very tight with the wallet. Last year, the White House allocated $850 million for CCDev activities in fiscal 2012, though Congress ended up granting only $406 million.I know that this is not what you wanted to hear but you deserve a candid answer. I wish very much that I could offer you an answer that was more favorable to your circumstances, but the law seems to be pretty clear. Had I been able to provide an Answer which might have given you a successful outcome, it would have been my pleasure to do so.I hope you understand.It has been my pleasure to assist you today with your information needs. It is my goal that you are satisfied. What are your options now?If you wish to continue this conversation, click on the Reply tab. If you are satisfied that I have answered your question, then please rate the answer with “excellent service” so that I receive credit for assisting you. Positive ratings are the only way I receive credit for assisting you today.IF you feel the need to click either "Helped a little" or "I expected more," then do not rate me (not yet, anyway!). Instead, reply to me using the REPLY tab. Specify what additional information you need and I will be happy to continue further and do everything I can to provide you with the service you seek. Thanks, ~~ J.B.