NASA officially says - 'Without a budget boost from Congress or cost savings within the Spitzer project, money for the mission will run out Sept. 30 and NASA will decommission the telescope beginning this fall. Spitzer received $16.5 million to operate in fiscal year 2014, which ends Sept. 30. Helou said the initial proposal considered by NASA's senior review called for a reduced operating budget of $15.35 million in fiscal year 2015.'
This over subscribed for observation time mission that cost billions to launch needs just $15~ million dollars to continue science for another year? And yet Congress authorizes funding for another aircraft carrier group that the Pentagon doesn't want with little debate.
The New Horizons mission to Pluto is having trouble finding a follow on target in the Kuiper Belt and is looking for hard to get observation time on the Hubble. Couldn't the Spitzer be used for this purpose instead? Shutting down a functioning space telescope before its mechanical demise is fiscally and scientifically absurd.