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ND ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT FUND FOR 3 5005 01308 540Y r OF 2005; ACKNOWLEDGING AFRICAN
ur.,LLwlail u r THE TRANSATLANTIC SLAVE TRADE IN ALL OF THE AMERICAS WITH AN EMPHASIS ON DESCENDANTS IN LATIN AMERICA AND THE CARIBBEAN, AND FOR OTHER PURPOSES; AND HAITI ECONOMIC AND INFRASTRUCTURE RECONSTRUCTION ACT
THE WESTERN HEMISPHERE
AP? 7 U. 2pO
INTERNATIONAL RELATIONS HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES
ONE HUNDRED NINTH CONGRESS
H.R. 953, H. Con. Res. 175 and H.R. 611
JUNE 29, 2005
Serial No. 109-106
4th Floor Printed for the use of the Committee on International Relations
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COMMITTEE ON INTERNATIONAL RELATIONS
HENRY J. HYDE, Illinois, Chairman
JAMES A. LEACH, Iowa CHRISTOPHER H. SMITH, New Jersey, Vice Chairman
DAN BURTON, Indiana ELTON GALLEGLY, California ILEANA ROS-LEHTINEN, Florida DANA ROHRABACHER, California EDWARD R. ROYCE, California PETER T. KING, New York STEVE CHABOT, Ohio THOMAS G. TANCREDO, Colorado RON PAUL, Texas DARRELL ISSA, California JEFF FLAKE, Arizona JO ANN DAVIS, Virginia MARK GREEN, Wisconsin JERRY WELLER, Illinois MIKE PENCE, Indiana THADDEUS G. McCOTTER, Michigan KATHERINE HARRIS, Florida JOE WILSON, South Carolina JOHN BOOZMAN, Arkansas J. GRESHAM BARRETT, South Carolina CONNIE MACK, Florida JEFF FORTENBERRY, Nebraska MICHAEL McCAUL, Texas TED POE, Texas
TOM LANTOS, California HOWARD L. BERMAN, California GARY L. ACKERMAN, New York ENI F.H. FALEOMAVAEGA, American Samoa
DONALD M. PAYNE, New Jersey ROBERT MENENDEZ, New Jersey SHERROD BROWN, Ohio BRAD SHERMAN, California ROBERT WEXLER, Florida ELIOT L. ENGEL, New York WILLIAM D. DELAHUNT, Massachusetts GREGORY W. MEEKS, New York BARBARA LEE, California JOSEPH CROWLEY, New York EARL BLUMENAUER, Oregon SHELLEY BERKLEY, Nevada GRACE F. NAPOLITANO, California ADAM B. SCHIFF, California DIANE E. WATSON, California ADAM SMITH, Washington BETTY McCOLLUM, Minnesota BEN CHANDLER, Kentucky DENNIS A. CARDOZA, California
THOMAS E. MOONEY, SR., Staff Director/General Counsel
ROBERT R. KING, Democratic Staff Director
SUBCOMMITTEE ON THE WESTERN HEMISPHERE
DAN BURTON, Indiana, Chairman
RON PAUL, Texas ROBERT MENENDEZ, New Jersey
JERRY WELLER, Illinois, Vice Chairman GRACE NAPOLITANO, California KATHERINE HARRIS, Florida GREGORY W. MEEKS, New York
JAMES A. LEACH, Iowa ENI F.H. FALEOMAVAEGA, American
CHRISTOPHER H. SMITH, New Jersey Samoa
ILEANA ROS-LEHTINEN, Florida DONALD M. PAYNE, New Jersey
CONNIE MACK, Florida WILLIAM D. DELAHUNT, Massachusetts
MICHAEL McCAUL, Texas BARBARA LEE, California
MARK WALKER, Subcommittee Staff Director JESSICA LEWIS, Democratic Professional Staff Member [ t~Cc- DAN S. GETZ, Professional Staff Member
BRIAN WANKO, Staff Associate
H.R. 953, To authorize the establishment of a Social Investment and Economic Development Fund for the Americas to provide assistance to reduce poverty and foster increased economic opportunity in the countries of the Western Hemisphere, and for other purposes 2 H. Con. Res. 175, Acknowledging African descendants of the transatlantic
slave trade in all of the Americas with an emphasis on descendants in Latin America and the Caribbean, recognizing the injustices suffered by these African descendants, and recommending that the United States and the international community work to improve the situation of Afro-descendant communities in Latin America and the Caribbean 23 H.R. 611, To authorize the establishment of a program to provide economic and infrastructure reconstruction assistance to the Republic of Haiti, and for other purposes . 32 Amendments to H.R. 611 offered by the Honorable Gregory W. Meeks, a Representative in Congress from the State of New York 43 Amendment to H.R. 611 offered by the Honorable Barbara Lee, a Representative in Congress from the State of California 47
SOCIAL INVESTMENT AND ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT FUND FOR THE AMERICAS ACT OF 2005; ACKNOWLEDGING AFRICAN DESCENDANTS OF THE TRANSATLANTIC SLAVE
TRADE IN ALL OF THE AMERICAS WITH AN EMPHASIS ON DESCENDANTS IN LATIN AMERICA AND THE CARIBBEAN, AND FOR OTHER PURPOSES; AND HAITI ECONOMIC AND INFRASTRUCTURE RECONSTRUCTION ACT
WEDNESDAY, JUNE 29, 2005
HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES,
SUBCOMMITTEE ON THE WESTERN HEMISPHERE,
COMMITTEE ON INTERNATIONAL RELATIONS,
The Subcommittee met, pursuant to notice, at 2:45 p.m. in room 2200, Rayburn House Office Building, Hon. Dan Burton (Chairman of the Subcommittee) presiding.
Mr. BURTON. After the brief delay, the Committee will now come to order. Pursuant to notice, I call up the bill, H.R. 953, Social Investment and Economic Development Fund for the Americas Act of 2005, for purposes of markup and move its recommendation to the Full Committee, and without objection, the bill will be considered as read and open for amendment at any point, and I will invite my good friend and Ranking Member, Bob Menendez, to speak on the merits of this important measure that he has introduced. [H.R. 953 follows:]
To authorize the establishment of a Social Investment and Economic Development Fund for the Americas to provide assistance to reduce poverty and foster increased economic opportunity in the countries of the Western
Hemisphere, and for other purposes.
IN THE HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES
FEIIRUARY 17, 2005
Mr. MENENDEZ (for himself, Mr. BURTON of Indiana, Mr. LANTOS, Mls. RosLEIITINEN, Mr. I)EI AIUNT, Airs. NAPOLITAINO, MIS. HARRIS, Mr. AMEEKS of New York, AIr. PAYNE, Ms. LEE, AIr. BERLMAN, Ar. ACKERMAN, AIr.
SIIERMAN, iMr. WEXLER, AIr. ENGEL, Mr. CROWLEY, AIS. CORRINE BRoWN of Florida, Mr. GONZALEZ, Ar. RUSH, Mr. MCGOVERN, Mr.
GUTIEERIEZ, Mr. ItiNGEL, AMr. OWENS, Mr. SERRILNO, Mr. REYES, AIr.
HASTINGS of Florida, Mrs. CIIRISTENSEN, Ms. VEILZQUEZ, Ms. LINDA T. SANCHEZ of California, and MIr. BACA) introduced the following bill; which was referred to the Committee on International Relations, and in addition to the Committee on Financial Services, for a period to be subsequently determined by the Speaker, in each case for consideration of such
provisions as fall within the jurisdiction of the committee concerned
To authorize the establishment of a Social Investment and
Economic Development Fund for the Americas to provide assistance to reduce poverty and foster increased economic opportunity in the countries of the Western IIcmisphere, and for other purposes.
1 Be it enacted by the Senate and Ilouse of Representa2 ties of the United States ofAmerica in Congress assembled,
1 SECTION 1. SHORT TITLE.
2 This Act may be cited as the "Social Investment and
3 Economic Development Fund for the Americas Act of
5 SEC. 2. FINDINGS; STATEMENT OF POLICY.
6 (a) FINDINGS.-Congress finds the following:
7 (1) The historic economic, political, cultural,
8 and geographic relationships among the countries of
9 the Western Hemisphere are unique and of con10 tinuing special significance to the United States.
11 (2) The interests of the countries of the West12 ern Hemisphere are more interrelated today than
13 ever before. Consequently, sound economic, social,
14 and democratic progress in each of the countries
15 continues to benefit other countries, and lack of it
16 in any country may have serious repercussions in
18 (3) Following the historic Summits of the
19 Americas--the 1994 Summit in Miami, the 1998
20 Summit in Santiago, Chile, and the 2001 Summit in
21 Quebec City, Canada-the heads of state of the
22 countries of the Western Hemisphere accepted the
23 formidable challenge of economic and social integra24 tion in and between their respective countries.
25 (4) To make progress toward economic and so26 cial integration, there is a compelling need to focus
*HR 953 IH
1 on the social development of the people of the Amer2 icas which, in turn, will promote the economic and
3 political development of the region.
4 (5) Investment in social development in the
5 Americas, including investment in human and social
6 capital, specifically in education, health, housing,
7 and labor markets with the goal of combating social
8 exclusion and social ills, will consolidate political de9 mocracy and the rule of law and promote regional
10 economic integration and trade in the region.
11 (6) The challenge of achieving economic inte12 gration between one of the world's most developed
13 economies and some of the poorest and most vulner14 able countries requires a special effort to promote
15 social equality, develop skills, and modernize the in16 frastructure in poorer countries that will enable the
17 people of these countries to maximize the amount of
18 benefits accrued from economic integration.
19 (7) The particular challenge facing social and
20 economic development in Latin America is the his21 toric and persistent highly unequal distribution of
22 wealth. Latin America suffers from the most un23 equal distribution of wealth in the world with huge
24 inequities in the distribution of assets including edu25 cation, land, and credit.
*HR 953 IH
1 (8) Latin America also confronts the challenge
2 of an increasing number of poor people. Approxi3 mately 44 percent of the population lives in poverty
4 and extreme poverty is a persistent problem.
5 (9) 1\larginalized groups, including indigenous
6 populations, people of African descent, women, peo7 ple with disabilities, and rural populations, are so8 cially excluded and suffer from poverty, stigma, and
10 (10) Democratic values are dominant through11 out the Americas, and nearly all governments in the
12 region have come to power through democratic elec13 tions.
14 (11) Nonetheless, existing democratic govern15 ments and their constituent institutions remain frag16 ile and face critical challenges including effective
17 democratic civilian authority over these institutions,
18 including the military, the consolidation or establish19 ment of independent judicial institutions and the
20 rule of law, and the elimination of corruption.
21 (12) The prosperity, security, and well-being of
22 the United States is linked directly to peace, pros23 perity, and democracy in the Americas. The entire
24 region benefits by reducing poverty, strengthening
25 the middle class, and promoting the rule of law
*HR 953 IH
1 which will also increase markets for United States
2 goods and create a better environment for regional
3 investment by United States businesses.
4 (13) Section 101 of the Foreign Assistance Act
5 of 1961 (22 U.S.C. 2151) establishes as a principal
6 objective of United States foreign assistance the
7 "encouragement and sustained support of the people
8 of developing countries in their efforts to acquire the
9 knowledge and resources essential to development
10 and to build the economic, political, and social insti11 tutions which will improve the quality of their lives".
12 (14) It is in the national interests of the United
13 States to assist developing countries in the Western
14 Hemisphere as they implement the economic and po15 litical policies which are necessary to achieve equi16 table economic growth.
17 (15) The Summit of the Americas has directly
18 charged the multilateral institutions of the Americas,
19 including the Organization of American States
20 (OAS), the Inter-American Development Bank
21 (IADB), and the new Inter-American Agency for Co22 operation and Development with mobilizing private23 public sector partnerships among industry and civil
24 society to help achieve equitable development objee25 tives.
*HR 953 IH
1 (16) By supporting the purposes and objectives
2 of development and applying such purposes and ob3 jectives to the Americas, a Social Investment and
4 Economic Development Fund for the Americas can
5 advance the national interests of the United States
6 and can directly improve the lives of the poor and
7 marginalized groups, encourage broad-based eco8 nomic growth while protecting the environment,
9 build human capital and knowledge, support mean10 ingful participation in democracy, and promote
11 peace and justice in the Americas.
12 (b) STATEMENT OF PoucY.-It is, therefore, the
13 policy of the United States14 (1) to promote market-based principles, eco15 nomic integration, social development, and trade in
16 and between countries of the Americas by17 (A) nurturing public-private partnerships
18 and microenterprise development;
19 (B) improving the quality of life and in20 vesting in human capital, specifically targeting
21 education, health and disease prevention, and
23 (C) strengthening the rule of law through
24 improved efficiency and transparency in govern25 ment services; and
*HR 953 IH
1 (D) reducing poverty and eliminating the
2 exclusion of marginalized populations, including
3 people of African descent, indigenous groups,
4 women, and people with disabilities; and
5 (2) to establish an investment fund for the
6 Western Hemisphere to advance the national inter7 ests of the United States, directly improve the lives
8 of the poor and marginalized, encourage broad-based
9 economic growth while protecting the environment,
10 build human capital and knowledge, support mean11 ingful participation in democratic institutions and
12 processes, and promote peace and justice in the
14 SEC. 3. AMENDMENT TO FOREIGN ASSISTANCE ACT OF 15 1961.
16 Part I of the Foreign Assistance Act of 1961 (22
17 U.S.C. 2151 et seq.) is amended by adding at the end 18 the following:
19 "CHAPTER 13-SOCIAL INVESTMENT AND 20 ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT FUND FOR
21 THE AMERICAS
22 "SEC. 499H. AUTHORIZATION OF ASSISTANCE. 23 "(a) IN GENEIRAL.-The President, acting through
24 the Administrator of the United States Agency for Inter25 national Development, shall provide assistance to reduce
*HR 953 IH
1 poverty and foster increased economic opportunity in the
2 countries of the Western Hemisphere by3 "(1) nurturing public-private partnerships and
4 microenterprise development;
5 "(2) improving the quality of life and investing
6 in human capital, specifically targeting education,
7 health and disease prevention, and housing;
8 "(3) strengthening the rule of law through im9 proved efficiency and transparency in government
10 services; and
11 "(4) reducing poverty and eliminating the ex12 clusion of marginalized populations, including people
13 of African descent, indigenous groups, women, and
14 people with disabilities.
15 "(b) TERMS AND CONDITIONS.-Assistance under
16 this chapter may be provided on such other terms and con17 ditions as the President may determine. 18 "SEC. 4991. TECHNICAL REVIEW COMMITTEE.
19 "(a) IN GENEtAu,.-Therc is established within the
20 United States Agency for International Development a 21 technical review committee. 22 "(b) MEMBERSIIIP.-The President, by and with the
23 advice and consent of the Senate, shall appoint to serve 24 on the technical review committee-
*HR 953 IH
1 "(1) individuals with technical expertise with
2 respect to the development of Latin America and the
3 Caribbean; and
4 "(2) citizens of the United States with technical
5 expertise with respect to development projects and
6 business experience.
7 Technical expertise shall be the sole criterion in making
8 appointments to the technical review committee.
9 "(c) DUTIEs.-The technical review committee shall
10 review all projects proposed for funding using assistance 11 provided under section 499II(a), and make recommenda12 tions to the President with respect to the guidelines to 13 be used in evaluating project proposals and the suitability 14 of the proposed projects for funding. 15 "(d) CONFLICTS OF INTEREST.-A member of the
16 technical review committee shall not be permitted to re17 view an application submitted by an organization with 18 which the member has been or is affiliated. 19 "SEC. 499J. REPORT.
20 "The President shall prepare and transmit to the
21 Committee on International Relations of the House of 22 Representatives, the Committee on Foreign Relations of 23 the Senate, and other appropriate congressional commit24 tees an annual report on the specific programs, projects, 25 and activities carried out under this chapter during the
*HR 953 IH
1 preceding year, including an evaluation of the results of
2 such programs, projects, and activities.
3 "SEC. 499K. AUTHORIZATION OF APPROPRIATIONS.
4 "(a) IN GENERIL.-TlThere are authorized to be ap5 propriated to carry out this chapter $250,000,000 for
6 each of the fiscal years 2006 through 2010.
7 "(b) ADDITIONAL AUTIIORITIES.-Amounts appro8 priated pursuant to subsection (a)9 "(1) may be referred to as the 'United State's
10 Social Investment and Economic Development Fund
11 for the Americas';
12 "(2) are authorized to remain available until ex13 pended; and
14 "(3) are in addition to amounts otherwise avail15 able for such purposes.
16 "(c) FUNDING LIMITATION.-Not more than 7 per17 cent of the amounts appropriated pursuant to subsection 18 (a) for a fiscal year may be used for administrative ex19 penses.".
20 SEC. 4. AMENDMENT TO THE INTER-AMERICAN DEVELOP21 MENT BANK ACT.
22 The Inter-American Development Bank Act (22
23 U.S.C. 283-283z-10) is amended by adding at the end the 24 following:
*HR 953 IH
1 "SEC. 39. SOCIAL INVESTMENT AND ECONOMIC DEVELOP2 MENT FUND FOR THE AMERICAS.
3 "(a) IN GENERAL.-The Secretary of the Treasury
4 shall instruct the United States Executive Director at the 5 Bank to use the voice, vote, and influence of the United 6 States to urge the Bank to establish an account to be 7 known as the 'Social Investment and Economic Develop8 ment Fund for the Americas' (in this section referred to 9 as the 'Fund'), which is to be operated and administered 10 by the Board of Executive Directors of the Bank con11 sistent with subsection (b). The United States Governor 12 of the Bank may vote for a resolution transmitted by the 13 Board of Executive Directors which provides for the estab14 lishment of such an account, and the operation and admin15 istration of the account consistent with subsection (b). 16 "(b) GOVERNING RULES.17 "(1) USE OF FUNDS.-The Fund shall be used
18 to provide assistance to reduce poverty and foster in19 creased economic opportunity in the countries of the
20 Western IHemisphere by21 "(A) nurturing public-private partnerships
22 and microenterprise development;
23 "(B) improving the quality of life and in24 vesting in human capital, specifically targeting
25 education, health and disease prevention, and
*HR 953 IH
1 "(C) strengthening the rule of law through
2 improved efficiency and transparency in govern3 ment services; and
4 "(D) reducing poverty and eliminating the
5 exclusion of marginalized populations, including
6 people of African descent, indigenous groups,
7 women, and people with disabilities.
8 "(2) APPLICATION FOR FUNDING TIIROUGII A
9 COMPETITIVE PROCESS.-Any interested person or
10 organization may submit an application for funding
11 by the Fund.
12 "(3) TECHNICAL REVIEW COMMITTEE.13 "(A) IN GENERAL.--The Fund shall have
14 a technical review committee.
15 "(B) MEMBERSIIP.-The Board of Execu16 tive Directors of the Bank shall appoint to
17 serve on the technical review committee18 "(i) individuals with technical exper19 tise with respect to the development of
20 Latin America and the Caribbean; and
21 "(ii) citizens of the United States with
22 technical expertise with respect to develop23 ment projects and business experience.
24 Technical expertise shall be the sole criterion
25 (other than citizenship pursuant to clause (ii))
*HR 953 IH
1 in making appointments to the technical review
3 "(C) DUTIES.-The technical review com4 mittee shall review all projects proposed for
5 funding by the Fund, and make recommenda6 tions to the Board of Executive Directors of the
7 Bank with respect to the guidelines to be used
8 in evaluating project proposals and the suit9 ability of the proposed projects for funding.
10 "(D) CONFLICTS OF INTEREST.-A mem11 ber of the technical review committee shall not
12 be permitted to review an application submitted
13 by an organization with which the member has
14 been or is affiliated.
15 "(4) REVIEW OF PROPOSED PROJECTS.-Not
16 more frequently than annually, the Board of Execu17 tive Directors of the Bank shall review and make de18 cisions on applications for projects to be funded by
19 the Fund, in accordance with procedures which pro20 vide for transparency. The Board of Executive Di21 rectors shall provide advance notice to all interested
22 parties of any date on which such a review will be
24 "(c) CONTRIBUTION AUTIIORITY.-To the extent and
25 in the amounts provided in advance in appropriations
*HR 953 IH
1 Acts, the United States Governor of the Bank may con2 tribute to the Fund $1,250,000,000.
3 "(d) LIMITATIONS ON AUTIIORIZATION OF APPRO4 PRIATIONS.5 "(1) IN GENERAL.-For the contribution au6 thorized by subsection (c), there are authorized to be
7 appropriated for payment to the Secretary of the
8 Treasury $250,000,000 for each fiscal year begin9 ning with the fiscal year in which the resolution de10 scribed in subsection (a) is adopted.
11 "(2) ADDITIONAL AUTITORITIES.-Amounts ap12 propriated pursuant to paragraph (1)13 "(A) are authorized to remain available
14 until expended; and
15 "(B) are in addition to amounts otherwise
16 available for such purposes.
17 "(3) FUNDING LIMITATION.-Not more than 7
18 percent of the amounts appropriated pursuant to
19 paragraph (1) for a fiscal year may be used for ad20 ministrative expenses.".
21 SEC. 5. SENSE OF CONGRESS. 22 It is the sense of Congress that the countries of the
23 Western IIemisphere should collectively provide assistance 24 equal to the amount of United States bilateral assistance 25 provided under chapter 13 of part I of the Foreign Assist-
*HR 953 IH
1 ance Act of 1961 (as added by section 3(a) of this Act) 2 and multilateral assistance provided by the Social Invest3 ment and Economic Development Fund for the Americas 4 under section 39 of the Inter-American Development 5 Bank Act (as added by section 4 of this Act) for the same
6 purpose for which such assistance was provided.
*HR 953 IH
Mr. BURTON. This bill goes right to the core of the problems and opportunities that challenge our neighbors in Latin America in the areas of social investment and economic development and calls for countries in the region to match our contributions.
Since the 1980s, I have been very concerned about promoting democratization in Central and South America. In recent years, I have grown increasingly convinced that in order to stabilize democracy in the region and enhance security throughout the hemisphere, we must do more to alleviate poverty. Despite the gains of the eighties and nineties, the Latin American democracies are still fragile, and many people remain in poverty.
Spreading prosperity throughout the Western Hemisphere must continue to be a key, long-term goal of the United States, and while I do not believe that trade agreements alone are a panacea to cure the ills of our hemisphere, I do believe that the economic prosperity that these agreements can provide would, in fact, create the conditions by which we can alleviate poverty, promote the rule of law, strengthen democratic and civil institutions, and thereby improve the lives of the millions who now live in poverty.
We need to work closely with our partners in the region to create new economic opportunities through expanded trade and investment and the relationships that are in our mutual economic interests. CAFTA and the Andean Free Trade Agreement will, in my view, become key opportunities for the nations of Central and South America and will help create the conditions for increased economic activity, investment, and improved living conditions.
There is a host of other challenges where United States assistance can play a crucial role in Latin America, from education and professional skills development, modernization of infrastructure, economic disparities and unequal distribution of wealth, rights of indigenous groups, corruption and establishment of independent arbiters of justice.
I believe H.R. 953 is a robust approach to foster social and economic opportunities in the Western Hemisphere, and I maintain my belief that FTAs for Central America and the Andean region also have built-in mechanisms that reinforce transparency and democratic development in these pivotal communities in our hemisphere. I support this measure, and I now invite Mr. Menendez for his statement.
Mr. MENENDEZ. Thank you, Mr. Chairman. Let me first, Mr. Chairman, thank you for the manner in which you have conducted this Subcommittee in this session. It has been as bipartisan as it gets. I appreciate the spirit and the nature in which you have conducted it in, I think, an exemplary manner, and even by the fact that the markup today has an equal number of Democratic and Republican bills offered for markup. So I appreciate that, and I appreciate that spirit.
I want to thank you particularly for your leadership on this bill, as an original co-sponsor and as Chairman of the Subcommittee, and I want to recognize several of your staff members-Mark Walker, Dan Getz, and Brian Wanko of your staff-for their hard work, and I certainly want to thank Jessica Lewis of my staff, who has been working on this so hard to bring it to this point. And I want to thank all of the Members of the Subcommittee, both Re-
publican and Democratic alike, who have co-sponsored the legislation, as well as Senator Dodd for introducing companion legislation in the Senate.
I also want to thank the groups and organizations who we have been listening to, working with, dialouging with, which have had many changes since the bill was originally conceived-we have listened to what you had to say-for meeting with me and my staff, and for making it a better piece of legislation.
We have spent the last 6 months listening and talking to experts about a range of problems that impact our hemisphere, from crime, to democracy, to the lack of the rule of law, and let me take a moment to remind us all what they said.
Professor Arturo Valenzuela said:
"Failed states close to home would represent a lost opportunity to turn the Americas into an engine of growth and prosperity at a time when China and India are surging ahead . [they would also] constitute potential threats to the security of the United States and encourage uncontrolled migration patterns."
Otto Reich said:
"There is nothing more critical or rapid we can do to accelerate global development than to try to stem the tie of corruption."
Aldolfo Franco said:
"Latin America is caught in a vicious cycle where economic growth is thwarted by high crime rates and where a lack of economic opportunity . is contributing to a rise in crime."
Bishop Alvaro Ramazzini said:
"Without a concerted effort to complement trade and development in a serious way . the promise of democratic reforms and a just participation in the global market will be frustrated."
So I look at what we are doing today as a culmination of everything this Subcommittee has talked about. What we have found across the board is one distinct message, that it is time to take action on the core, key issues that have created a crisis of democracy and are ripping at the fabric of our hemisphere.
Since our hearing on democracy, we have lost a second President in Bolivia, and the crisis in Nicaragua has worsened. We have lost a President in Ecuador, and the situation in Haiti remains one of the most urgent in the hemisphere. I am concerned that what we see in our hemisphere has progressed far beyond freedom of expression, that the street is a substitute for the ballot box, that protests are a substitute for communication between citizens and their government.
Clearly, at a time when Latin American Presidents are being toppled left and right by crowds frustrated with the failure of government to provide them adequate education, housing, and
healthcare, at a time when anti-Americanism is on the rise throughout the hemisphere, at a time when our world is growing smaller, when infectious diseases move throughout the hemisphere, when crime penetrates borders, when terrorists use failed states as a safe haven, we can and must do much more.
We must create a new plan for our hemisphere, in partnership with our neighbors, which addresses these core problems that our witnesses throughout the last several months have brought to our attention here in this Subcommittee. And I believe that is exactly in part what we do in the Social Investment and Economic Development Fund.
The fund will more than double development funding to the region, with a total of $2.5 billion over the next 5 years for housing, healthcare, and education in Latin America. It will also focus on the rule of law and transparency and target tranditionally marginalized communities.
And we also know that this fund will benefit us here in the United States. It is in the national interest of the United States to increase demand for U.S. goods in a region of 500 million people by growing those economies. It is in the national interest and security interest of the United States to create greater economic growth in Latin America so that people will not leave their homes to find jobs. It is in the national interest and security interest of the United States to increase stability in our hemisphere because chaos and insecurity creates unwarranted and unwanted opportunity for terrorists and criminals throughout the region.
And I believe that is why we have support from representatives of the business community, religious organizations, development groups, Hispanic organizations, many of whom have written letters in support of the legislation, and I would also like to note that this legislation is supported by groups and individuals on both sides of the CAFTA issue, and that is because no matter where we stand on trade issues, we all agree that a stable, safe, and prosperous Western Hemisphere is in the national interest and the national security interest of the United States.
I urge my colleagues to join me in voting for the bill, and, again, Mr. Chairman, I appreciate your support and leadership.
Mr. BURTON. Thank you, Mr. Menendez.
Are there any other statements? The Vice Chairman, Mr. Weller.
Mr. WELLER. Well, thank you, Mr. Chairman, and thank you for holding this important markup today. Mr. Chairman, looking at the bills we are marking up today, we see a common goal: Working to address poverty in our own hemisphere and the Western Hemisphere, our own neighborhood.
Poverty is one of the greatest challenges we are confronting in our hemisphere, and it is important that we continue to work to end poverty with our closest neighbors and friends, who happen to be some of the poorest nations in the world.
Importantly, I wanted to briefly highlight two areas where President Bush and this House of Representatives are working together against poverty today.
First, we are quickly approaching the time when the United States Congress will choose to ratify the DR-CAFTA Trade Agreement. According to a report just released by the World Bank, DRCAFTA has potential to help lift many Central Americans out of poverty. The World Bank report notes that economies that participate in free trade agreements tend to have increased rates of about six-tenths percent increase above normal growth in the first 5 years. In the case of Central America alone, this would mean
500,000 residents of Central America lifted from poverty by the end of this decade.
As I have said before, the DR-CAFTA is just one part of the answer to poverty, and it will not alone solve the economic and political woes of Central America and the Dominican Republic. But trade is an important component in strengthening economies in democracy, and this agreement deserves ratification by the Congress.
Second, let me highlight President Bush's Millennium Challenge Account. The MCA encourages good governance and economic growth led by just rule of law and ending corruption. Importantly, much of the decision-making is put in the hands of individual democratically-elected governments of the participating countries to determine best how to invest resources to achieve these goals.
A few weeks ago, President Maduro of Honduras and President Bush of the United States signed the first Millennium Challenge Account Agreement for the Western Hemisphere, allocating $215 million in funding for rural development and transportation in Honduras. Farmers will be partners in developing horticultural crops, such as tomatoes, plantains, and peppers, that can bring a four-to-eight-fold profit increase over the traditional crops of sugar and corn.
Transportation systems will be improved, creating a link between Atlantic and Pacific ports, production centers, and farm-to-market roads. Nicaragua is now working toward a $175 million compact with the Millennium Challenge Account. These funds will provide sustainable economic growth and development for these countries, helping lift tens of thousands of families out of poverty.
Again, Mr. Chairman, let me commend you on holding this markup today, and I look forward to continuing to work with you and my friends on the Democratic side of the aisle as well as my friends on the Republican side of the aisle in continuing to address poverty in our own neighborhood hemisphere. Thank you, Mr. Chairman.
Mr. BURTON. Thank you, Mr. Weller.
Ms. NAPOLITANO. Thank you, Mr. Chair. I really commend my friend and colleague, Ranking Member Menendez, for introducing H.R. 953 and urge my colleagues' support for H.R. 953.
This really marks a beginning of things that we feel that are long in coming-that is, support for our neighbors to the south that have been neglected. The budgets in the past 2 years have drastically cut funding for the Western Hemisphere, even though this year there is a 12-percent cut in core programs. We hear U.S. citizens complain about illegal migration to the United States, but we do very little in helping to foster economic growth in South and Central America, and we are very cognizant of the great problems that exist in Latin America-the civil strife in Bolivia and Haiti, the gang violence of Central America, and, of course, the drug cultivation in the Andes-and I feel that, with the institution of this act, we will be able to nurture public/private partnerships that encourage micro-enterprise development and invest in education, disease prevention, and, of course, housing, while strengthening the rule of law and actually will support participation in democratic institutions.
So, to me and others that have looked at South and Central America as countries that have long been waiting for assistance, this is a good start, and we hope that we will have the support to be able to help our neighbors south of the United States. Thank you, Mr. Chair.
Mr. BURTON. Thank you.
Any other comments? Mr. Payne.
Mr. PAYNE. Very briefly, I also want to extend my congratulations to Mr. Menendez. I hope that when we talk about USAID and the Inter-American Development Bank that we do not take from Peter to pay Paul. I hope that whatever we have going, what little that is there, that we not take from existing programs in order to shift it into the $2.5 billion requested or authorized, and we hope that the appropriators will fund it fully but, once again, not to take money from other things.
Mr. BURTON. Thank you, Mr. Payne.
Any other comments? The gentleman from Massachusetts.
Mr. DELAHUNT. Thank you, Mr. Chairman. We echo the sentiments expressed by Mr. Menendez regarding your leadership. I would also be remiss not to acknowledge the tireless efforts of Mr. Menendez and Jessica Lewis, as well as the staffers on the Republican side. This is really the culmination of a long and arduous odyssey for this particular legislation. I believe it is incumbent upon us now to give approval at the Full Committee level, and see that this comes to the Floor.
One aspect of this proposal is that it requires a match, and I think that that is very important. It sends a message to Latin American countries that we expect that this is a partnership and that there will be an investment in infrastructure, health, environment, education, so that the growing disparity of wealth and income that currently exists in Latin America, that I believe causes so much instability and puts a great stress on democracy, because there is only so much stress and poverty that democracy can bear. This is an important beginning, and it sends that message.
I will conclude again by saying "Great job" to Bob.
Mr. MENENDEZ. Thank you.
Mr. BURTON. Thank you, Mr. Delahunt.
Any other comments?
Mr. BURTON. Any amendments to the resolution?
Mr. BURTON. If there are no amendments, the question occurs on the motion to report the bill, H.R. 953, favorably to the Full Committee. All in favor, say aye.
[A chorus of ayes.]
Mr. BURTON. All opposed, signify by saying no.
Mr. BURTON. The motion is approved, and the bill is reported favorably. The staff is directed to make any technical and conforming amendments that are necessary.
[Discussion off the record.]
Mr. BURTON. We will now call up H. Con. Res. 175, Acknowledging African descendants of the transatlantic slave trade in all
of the Americas with an emphasis on descendants in Latin America and the Caribbean. This is sponsored by Mr. Rangel, I believe. Pursuant to notice, I call up Resolution 175 for purposes of markup and to move its recommendation to the Full Committee. Without objection, the resolution will be considered as read and open for amendment at any point.
[H. Con. Res. 175 follows:]
1ST SESSION H.CON RES 175
Acknowledging African descendants of the transatlantic slave trade in all
of the Americas with an emphasis on descendants in Latin America and the Caribbean, recognizing the injustices suffered by these African descendants, and recommending that the United States and the international community work to improve the situation of Afro-descendant
communities in Latin America and the Caribbean.
IN THE HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES JUNE 8, 2005
Mr. RANGEL (for himself, Mr. PAYNE, Ms. LEE, Mr. MEEKS of New York,
and AMr. JEFFERSON) submitted the following concurrent resolution;
which was referred to the Committee on International Relations
Acknowledging African descendants of the transatlantic slave
trade in all of the Americas with an emphasis on descendants in Latin America and the Caribbean, recognizing the injustices suffered by these African descendants, and recommending that the United States and the international community work to improve the situation of Afro-descendant communities in Latin America and
Whereas during Black History Month it is important that we
not forget that African-Americans are not the only survivors of the transatlantic slave trade;
Whereas like the United States, many European nations benefited greatly from the colonization of Latin America and the Caribbean and their participation in the slave trade; Whereas the story of African descendants in all of the Americas remains untold, leading them to be forgotten, made
invisible, and allowed to suffer unjustly;
Whereas it is important to acknowledge that as a result of
the slave trade and immigration, approximately 80,000,000 to 150,000,000 persons of African descent live in Latin America and the Caribbean, making them the largest population of persons of African descent outside of Africa;
Whereas Afro-descendants are present in most all Latin
American countries, including Argentina, Bolivia, Chile, Ecuador, Guatemala, Honduras, Mexico, Nicaragua, Panama, Paraguay, Peru, Uruguay, and Venezuela;
Whereas the size of Afro-descendant populations vary in
range from less than 1 percent in some countries to as much as 30 percent in Colombia and 46 percent in Brazil and make up the majority in some Spanish speaking Caribbean nations, such as Cuba and the Dominican Republie;
Whereas Afro-descendant populations have made significant
economic, social, and cultural contributions to their countries and the Western Hemisphere from their unfortunate involvement in the transatlantic slave trade to their recent contributions to trade, tourism, and other industries; Whereas although persons of African descent have made significant achievements in education, employment, economic, political, and social spheres in some countries, the vast majority are marginalized-living in impoverished
*HCON 175 IH
communities where they are excluded from centers of education, government, and basic human rights based
upon the color of their skin and ancestry;
Whereas Afro-descendants have shorter life expectancies,
higher rates of infant mortality, higher incidences of HIV/AIDS, higher rates of illiteracy, and lower incomes
than do other populations;
Whereas Afro-descendants encounter problems of access to
healthcare, basic education, potable water, housing, land titles, credit, equal justice and representation under the law, political representation, and other economic, political, health, and basic human rights; and
Whereas skin color and ancestry have led African-Americans
in the United States and African descendants in Latin America and the Caribbean to share similar injustices, leading to economic, social, health, and political inequalities: Now, therefore, be it
1 Resolved by the House of Representatives (the Senate
2 concurring), That Congress3 (1) recognizes and honors African descendants
4 in the Americas for their contributions to the eco5 nomic, social, and cultural fabric of the countries in
6 the Americas, particularly in Latin American and
7 Caribbean societies;
8 (2) recognizes that as a result of their skin
9 color and ancestry, African descendants in the
10 Americas have wrongfully experienced economic, so11 cial, and political injustices;
*HCON 175 IH
1 (3) urges the President to take appropriate
2 measures to encourage the celebration and remem3 brance of the achievements of African descendants
4 in the Americas and a resolution of injustices suf5 fered by African descendants in the Americas;
6 (4) encourages the United States and the inter7 national community to work to ensure that extreme
8 poverty is eradicated, universal education is
9 achieved, quality healthcare is made available, sus10 tainable environmental resources, including land
11 where applicable, is provided, and equal access to
12 justice and representation under the law is granted
13 in Afro-descendant communities in Latin America
14 and the Caribbean; and
15 (5) encourages the United States and the inter16 national community to achieve these goals in Latin
17 America and the Caribbean by18 (A) promoting research that focuses on
19 identifying and eradicating racial disparities in
20 economic, political, and social spheres;
21 (B) promoting, funding, and creating de22 velopment programs that focus on Afro-de23 scendant communities;
24 (C) providing technical support and train25 ing to Afro-descendant advocacy groups that
*HCON 175 IH
1 work to uphold basic human rights in the re2 gion;
3 (D) promoting the creation of an inter4 national working group that focuses on prob5 lems of communities of Afro-descendants in the
6 Americas; and
7 (E) promoting trade and other bilateral
8 and multilateral agreements that take into ac9 count the needs of Afro-descendant commu10 nities.
*HCON 175 IH
Mr. BURTON. Today, democratic progress in Latin America and the Caribbean is being measured by inches. Progress for some of the Afro-Latino communities in the hemisphere has been appallingly slow. Almost one-third of the population in Latin America is made up of descendants of the millions of West African slaves brought to the Americas by European traders during the colonial period.
Afro-Latinos comprise a majority of the population in Cuba and the Dominican Republic, while in Brazil, Colombia, Panama, Venezuela, Ecuador, and Nicaragua, they form a very significant minority, yet most Afro-Latinos are among the poorest, most marginalized groups in the region. This Administration continues to push for democratic progress, prosperity, and security in the hemisphere, and our assistance is geared to maximize efforts to reduce poverty. Part of a comprehensive strategy must be steady advocacy for the political and economic rights of minority groups.
The bill before us provides a thoughtful, pro-active framework to address the injustices suffered by the Afro-Latino community and to broaden political representation, human rights, and greater social and economic rights.
This is something that I think is long overdue, and with that, do any of my colleagues have opening statements they would like to make? Mr. Menendez.
Mr. MENENDEZ. Thank you, Mr. Chairman. Let me say that I strongly support the bill, which acknowledges the contributions of African descendants in Latin America and the Caribbean and calls on the international community to improve their situation. And I want to thank my colleagues, Congressman Rangel, who is the sponsor, as well as Congressmen Meeks, Payne, and Congresswoman Lee, for highlighting this important issue. It is one that in the bill we just passed on the Social and Economic Development Fund, we deal with, in part, by seeking to recognize that that assistance, in part, will go to a focus on marginalized communities.
The bill calls on each of us to recognize certain fundamental truths, that people of African descent have made innumerable and invaluable economic, social, and cultural contributions to the Americas and that, as a result, for nothing more than the color of their skin, they have suffered cruel injustices and a legacy of slavery that is still evident today.
Today, 150 million people of African descent are spread throughout the region, from Nicaragua to the Dominican Republic to Brazil. But while Afro-Latinos comprise less than a third of Latin America's total population, they account for an astounding 40 percent of the region's poor. In fact, in the two countries with the largest Afro-Latino populations in South America-Brazil and Colombia-Afro descendants have always been, and still are, among the poorest, least-educated, and lowest-paid citizens.
Throughout Latin America and the Caribbean, Afro descendants continue to be treated often as second-class citizens. They are among the poorest, most marginalized groups in the region. They suffer from lack of political representation, human rights protection, land rights, and social and economic rights and benefits. Many do not have access to education, stable employment, and land titles-all vital tools to overcome poverty.
In some countries, like Colombia, Afro descendants lack access to justice and governmental protection from armed conflict, and in others, such as Brazil, the illiteracy rate for Afro descendants is 20 percent compared to only 8 percent for whites.
Clearly, this is not simply a result of chance. There are historical factors in place that must be acknowledged and addressed in order to change the situation. Racial discrimination is a plague that destroys the productivity and stability of our hemisphere. I believe that all people should be entitled to enjoy the same rights and have access to the same opportunities, regardless of the color of their skin, in Latin America, in the Caribbean, and for that fact, throughout the world.
We must work together, in partnership with our neighbors, to eliminate racism and to help improve the lives of Afro descendants and other marginalized groups throughout the hemisphere. Clearly, there can be no true advancement in the region unless all parts of society are included, and that includes people of African descent.
I urge my colleagues to support the bill, with appreciation to those who have brought this to the forefront.
Mr. BURTON. Thank you, Mr. Menendez.
Are there further comments? Mr. Meeks. My good friend, Mr. Meeks.
Mr. MEEKS. Thank you, Mr. Chairman.
First, I want to also congratulate Mr. Rangel and thank Mr. Rangel for bringing this bill up to the Floor. You know, too often, even those of us who are African-American here in America, when we celebrate Black History Month, et cetera, we do not acknowledge first that there were a lot of other African descendants who were brought to this part of the hemisphere who are our brothers and sisters in Latin America. And I think that the first step to begin to correct some of the wrongs and the ill gains that have happened as a result of slavery is to first recognize and acknowledge it, and that is what this resolution begins to do, because when you think about the slave trade that benefitted those of us who live here in the United States, it also benefitted those who colonized Latin America, and, therefore, European countries benefitted to a great deal also.
We have got to begin to take that first step. Then, as Ranking Member Menendez just indicated, we have 150 million persons of African descent living in Latin America and the Caribbean, with 46 percent of them in Brazil and 30 percent in Colombia, yet when you look at those who are the poorest of the poor, disproportionately, they are African Latinos. When you look at those there of African descent, they have shorter life expectancies, higher rates of infant mortality, higher incidences of HIV/AIDS, higher rates of illiteracy, and lower incomes than other populations. They encounter problems for access to healthcare, for basic education, potable water, housing, land titles, credit, equal justice and representation under the law.
And as we know, as Dr. King has said, that "injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere," and we have to begin to make sure that we are moving forward to, first, recognize and then utilize the blessings that we have here in the United States and the lessons that we have learned from the wrongs that took place here
in the United States to begin to level the playing field also in Latin America, because only until that is accomplished can we have true democracies rising up in this hemisphere and can be assured that democracy will be there for all, no matter what their race, creed, color, or religion. Thank you, Mr. Chair.
Mr. BURTON. Thank you, Mr. Meeks.
Any other comments? Mr. Smith.
Mr. SMITH OF NEW JERSEY. Yes. Thank you very much, Mr. Chairman. I strongly support H. Con. Res. 175 and associate myself with the remarks of those who have spoken. It is important to recognize the ongoing prejudice and racial discrimination that is meted out toward those who are of African descent, and I would also point out that there are also some who are in prison today, in Cuban prisons, namely, Dr. Oscar Biscet, an Afro-Cuban, who has now gotten a 25-year prison sentence because of his human rights activism. He has been absolutely and horribly mistreated by Fidel Castro and has suffered solitary confinement and a host of other tortures in his prison cell in Cuba. So we should not forget that there are people today-this is not past; this is present, and I hope that we will keep our focus on Fidel Castro. Dr. Biscet is a human rights leader who is second to none.
Mr. BURTON. Thank you, Mr. Smith.
Mr. PAYNE. Thank you very much, Mr. Chairman. Thank you for bringing this resolution up, and I certainly thank Mr. Rangel for reintroducing it with the Members of the Committee who have cosponsored it.
The number is 150 million people, many African descendants, are recognized in their countries. For so long, it has been said that it was class in Latin America. Latin America was different than other parts of the world, that people were not judged by the color of their skin, that it was basically by the class that they were in.
Ten years ago, people started looking at the class and looking at the color and finding that 99 percent of the people in the lower classes happen to be dark, of African descent, and most of the people in the higher class happen to be of non-African descent. So it may be class; it is just that the class is overwhelmingly one group. And so I think that there has been recognition that race matters in a negative sense in the fact that there has been such a lack of progress.
I think that the awakening has come in countries-even in Mexico, there are groups calling themselves "Afro-Mexicans," and, of course, in Colombia, Guatemala, Honduras, Costa Rica now, and in Brazil and Venezuela, there are people who are now asking for and fighting for their rights. Lands have been taken. Also, we should remember that the indigenous people who were there first before any of the Conquistadors or the colonialists came are also marginalized. Their numbers, unfortunately, have dwindled to 1 and 2 and 3 percent, but we also have to remember, indigenous people are being mistreated and abused and so forth.
I would like to say that we should continue to be vigilant. I talked to several Presidents of Brazil, the President of Venezuela. We raised it with Fidel Castro, who also admits that race is a factor in Cuba, that there is an attempt to try to work on it. I think
we should look into the persons who are in prison, as Mr. Smith mentioned, and to be supportive of human rights everywhere. So I will reluctantly commend the Chairman for his bipartisan work, and he is doing a great job as Chairman. He is growing well into the job. I associate myself with the remarks of the other Members.
Mr. BURTON. Thank you, Mr. Payne, and, once again, I apologize for that garage in New Jersey. [Laughter.] You do not want to bring that up anymore? Okay.
Ms. Lee, did you have a comment?
Ms. LEE. Thank you. I would commend this Subcommittee for its bipartisan fashion and also would commend it for this hearing today.
As many of us, the millions of African Americans, are descendants of the transatlantic slave trade, and we very clearly know and recognize those vestiges of racism, what it has done. And so like African-Americans, African descendants in our hemisphere also deal with many, many of those same issues, and so this bill begins to really take the first step to recognize, I have to say personally, as our brothers and sisters, and as a Member of Congress, I say our friends in especially countries like Honduras and Colombia are recognized and that they deserve our focused attention, whether it be on healthcare or education.
I would just like to take a moment and recognize the Ambassador to the U.S. and also to the OAS, Ambassador Lavelle of Antigua, who is here today and who has done much work with regard to the people of African descent. Thank you, Mr. Chairman.
Mr. BURTON. Thank you, Ms. Lee, and welcome.
Any other discussion?
Mr. BURTON. Are there any amendments to the legislation?
Mr. BURTON. If not, the question occurs on the motion to report the resolution, H. Con. Res. 175, favorably. All in favor, signify by saying aye.
[A chorus of ayes.]
Mr. BURTON. All opposed, signify by saying no.
Mr. BURTON. In the opinion of the Chair, the ayes have it. The ayes have it.
Staff is directed to make any technical and conforming amendments that are necessary.
We will now go to H.R. 611, the Haiti Economic and Infrastructure Reconstruction Act. Pursuant to notice, I call up this bill for purposes of markup and move its recommendation to the Full Committee, and without objection, the bill will be considered as read and open for amendment at any point.
[H.R. 611 follows:]
1sT SESSION 1
To authorize the establishment of a program to provide economic and infrastructure reconstruction assistance to the Republic of HIaiti, and for
IN TIIE IIOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES
FEBIIUARY 8, 2005
Mr. FOLEY (for himself, Mr. RANoEL, and Mr. SIL W) introduced the
following bill; which was referred to the Committee on International Relations
To authorize the establishment of a program to provide economic and infrastructure reconstruction assistance to the
Republic of Haiti, and for other purposes.
1 Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representa2 tives of the United States ofAmerica in Congress assembled,
3 SECTION 1. SHORT TITLE.
4 This Act may be cited as the "IIaiti Economic and
5 Infrastructure Reconstruction Act".
1 SEC. 2. ECONOMIC AND INFRASTRUCTURE RECONSTRUC2 TION PROGRAM FOR THE REPUBLIC OF
4 (a) PRoaI(AM AUTIIORIZED.-The President is au5 thorized to establish an economic and infrastructure re6 construction program for the Republic of Haiti, to be 7 known as the "Haiti Economic and Infrastructure Recon8 struction Program" (in this section referred to as the "Re9 construction Program"), under which individuals who are 10 recruited into the Program will be deployed to Haiti to 11 provide assistance to the Government of Haiti related to 12 economic and infrastructure reconstruction and develop13 ment.
14 (b) AI'POINTMENT.-If the President establishes the
15 Reconstruction Program under subsection (a), the Presi16 dent shall appoint an officer or employee of the Bureau 17 for Latin America and the Caribbean of the United States 18 Agency for International Development to serve as the Di19 rector of the Reconstruction Program. The Director shall 20 possess expertise with respect to21 (1) Haiti; or
22 (2) economic, educational, judicial, law enforce23 mcent, healthcare, or infrastructure reconstruction
24 and recovery efforts in developing countries.
25 (c) COOIm)INATION.-The 1)irector shall coordinate
26 with appropriate officials from the Government of Haiti
*HR 611 IH
1 to identify ministries and agencies of the Government of 2 Haiti that require assistance concerning the reconstruc3 tion and development in Haiti with respect to4 (1) the economy, including a special emphasis
5 on the development of private and public domestic
6 and foreign business investment;
7 (2) the educational system, including a special
8 emphasis on the development of school facilities,
9 teacher training programs, and administration man10 agement programs;
11 (3) the judiciary and the rule of law;
12 (4) the healthcare system; and
13 (5) the infrastructure.
14 (d) RECRUITMENT OF INDIVIDUALS FOR PARTICIPA15 TION IN TIIE RECONSTRUCTION PRO(GRAIM.16 (1) REQUIRED QUALIFICATIONS.-The Director
17 shall recruit individuals who are citizens of the
18 United States and who possess19 (A) at minimum, a four-year college or
20 university degree awarded from an accredited
21 college or university located in the United
22 States; or
23 (B) such skills or expertise as the Director
24 determines to be relevant or appropriate to
25 carrv out the Reconstruction Program.
*HR 611 IH
1 (2) IIAITIAN-AMERICANS.-To the maximum
2 extent practicable, the Director shall recruit Hai3 tian-Americans.
4 (e) USE OF FUNDs.-The Director shall use funds
5 appropriated for the Reconstruction Program to6 (1) cover the costs of housing, in such amounts
7 as the Director determines to be appropriate, for in8 dividuals who are deployed to Haiti to carry out the
9 Reconstruction Program; and
10 (2) pay such individuals a salary, in such
11 amounts as the Director determines to be appro12 priate, taking into consideration the expertise of an
13 individual and the position in the Reconstruction
14 Program held by such individual.
15 (f) LENGTH OF DEPLOYMENT IN I-HAITI.16 (1) ONE YEAR.-Individuals recruited under
17 subsection (d) may be deployed to Haiti under the
18 Reconstruction Program for no longer than one
20 (2) EXCEPTION.-If the Director determines
21 that an extended period of deployment for any indi22 vidual is appropriate, and such individual consents
23 to such extension, the Director may extend the de24 ployment of such individual for no longer than two
25 additional years.
*HR 611 IH
1 (g) REPORTS.2 (1) FIRST INTERIM REPORT.-Not later than
3 six months after the date of the enactment of this
4 Act, the President shall submit to Congress a first
5 interim report regarding the Reconstruction Pro6 gram.
7 (2) SECOND INTERIM REPORT.-Not later than
8 12 months after the date of the enactment of this
9 Act, the President shall submit to Congress a second
10 interim report regarding the Reconstruction Pro11 gram.
12 (3) FINAL REPORT.-Not later than 18 months
13 after the date of the enactment of this Act, the
14 President shall submit to Congress a final report re15 garding the Reconstruction Program.
16 (4) CONTENTS.-The interim and final reports
17 shall include information relating to the following:
18 (A) A description and explanation of the
19 process of recruitment of individuals for partici20 pation in the Reconstruction Program, includ21 ing a description and explanation of22 (i) the selection criteria used; and
23 (ii) any incentives offered and the cost
24 of such incentives.
*HR 611 IH
1 (B) The number of individuals recruited
2 and the ministry or agency and the locality in
3 which each individual is placed.
4 (C) The potential for expansion of the Re5 construction Program.
6 (h) INFRASTRUCTURE DEFINED.-In this section,
7 the term "infrastructure" means a road, highway, bridge, 8 tunnel, airport, mass transportation vehicle or system, 9 intermodal transportation facility, waterway, commercial 10 port, drinking or waste water treatment facility, solid 11 waste disposal facility, pollution control system, and gas, 12 electricity, and oil utilities.
13 (i) AUTIIORIZATION OF APPROPRIATIONS.-There
14 are authorized to be appropriated to the President to carry 15 out this section such sums as may be necessary for each 16 of the fiscal years 2006 through 2011. It is the sense of 17 Congress that at least $3,000,000 should be made avail18 able for each of those fiscal years to carry out this section. 19 SEC. 3. HEALTHCARE ASSISTANCE PROGRAM FOR HAITI.
20 (a) HEALTHICARE PROGRAM AUTIIORIZED.-The
21 President is authorized to establish a healthcare assistance 22 program for Haiti, to be known as the "Haiti Healthcare 23 Assistance Program" (in this section referred to as the 24 "Healthcare Program"), under which grants may be made 25 to qualified nongovernmental organizations to establish
*HR 611 IH
1 programs in Haiti related to the prevention of infectious
2 diseases in Haiti.
3 (b) COORDINATION.-If the President establishes the
4 Healtheare Program under subsection (a), the President 5 shall seek to work with appropriate officials from the Gov6 ernment of Haiti and with appropriate individuals from 7 international financial institutions, civil society, non8 governmental organizations, and international organiza9 tions to work in coordination and cooperation with quali10 fied nongovernmental organizations. 11 (c) USE OF GRANT FUNDS.--A qualified nongovern12 mental organization that receives a grant through this sec13 tion shall use the grant to promulgate a comprehensive 14 and integrated strategy to combat and control infectious 15 diseases in Haiti through the establishment of a com16 prehensive healthcare infrastructure in Haiti that focuses 17 on education, prevention, care, treatment, support, capac18 ity development, and other related activities. 19 (d) SATISFACTION OF CRITERIA TO BE CONSIDERED
20 A QUALIFIED NONGOVERNMENTAL ORGANIZATION.-The 21 Administrator of the United States Agency for Inter22 national Development shall promulgate criteria that shall 23 be satisfied by a nongovernmental organization in order 24 for such organization to be considered a qualified non25 governmental organization for purposes of this section.
*HR 611 IH
1 (e) HEALTIICARE INFRASTRUCTURE DEFINED.-In
2 this section, the term Healthcaree infrastructure" means 3 an inpatient or outpatient hospital, clinic, or medical facil4 ity and medical programs, including programs for hiring 5 physicians, nurses, or other medical personnel and pro6 grams for acquiring transportation and communications
7 systems for medical purposes.
8 (f) AUTIIHORIZATION OF APPROPRIATIONS.-There
9 are authorized to be appropriated to the President to carry 10 out this section such sums as may be necessary for each 11 of the fiscal years 2006 through 2011. It is the sense of 12 Congress that at least $3,000,000 should be made avail13 able for each of those fiscal years to carry out this section.
*HR 611 IH
Mr. BURTON. Haiti is the hemisphere's poorest nation, plagued by violence and political instability. Since President Aristide's departure in February 2004, Haiti has had an interim government charged with holding new elections. A United Nations stabilization mission led by Brazil has been deployed to Haiti. Their efforts to ensure a secure and stable environment and to restore the rule of law in Haiti are showing signs of strain, real strain.
We are entering an electoral cycle in Haiti, with registration campaigns and voting scheduled for October through December for Parliamentary and Presidential contests. Providing security during this election cycle will require the UN mission in Haiti to comply with its chapter VII mandate for a disarmament, demobilization, and reinsertion program. Without security, these elections could be delayed or possibly derailed. Efforts to restore order, stability, and, most importantly, rebuild Haiti are threatened by violence. An end to violence and a renewed commitment to end poverty and corruption are all essential components of a comprehensive solution to Haiti's problems.
My colleagues, Congressman Foley and Congressman Rangel, have introduced H.R. 611 to address the vital economic and infrastructure reconstruction and development assistance needs of Haiti. The bill sets forth provisions for a new and much needed program to facilitate involvement by Haitian-Americans and others to help rebuild Haiti. The bill also provides for the establishment of a healthcare assistance program and coordination of resources and interventions aimed at critical public health problems, including infectious disease prevention.
I will now recognize any other Member for opening statements. Any opening statements? Ms. Napolitano. Did I get that correct?
Ms. NAPOLITANO. You sure did, Mr. Chair. Very good. Very good. I am impressed.
This is a bill that I thoroughly am supporting, and I am asking my colleagues also to consider supporting. We really need to take a look at the tragedy that has befallen Haiti. The bill itself is modeled after the Peace Corps, and certainly Haitian-Americans will play a role in providing assistance to Haiti in this area.
I would like to mention, though, that my concern is that since there is not a democratic government, that I would hope that we would look at NGOs so that that money is actually put into effect, and every cent is used wisely instead of going into a government that may end up in some politician's pocket. And I say that because I hear so much of what happens in other countries. It needs to go to fight infectious diseases. It needs to go to help economic development. It needs to go to areas where it truly will make a difference.
So, Mr. Chair, I want to add, of course, my thank you for conducting such a positive markup again. Thank you.
Mr. BURTON. Thank you, Ms. Napolitano.
Mr. MEEKS. Thank you, Mr. Chairman. I think that this is a very important bill that goes toward a nation which is very close, if not already there, to being a failed state. And when you have that situation, you have people who are suffering-women, children, and men-and we have got to begin to move in a direction with a policy toward Haiti that is sustained over a long period of time. Just a
1-year period, a 2-year period in dealing with Haiti is not going to resolve the issues that are confronting it.
Just an election does not resolve the issues of Haiti, and, in fact, we have got to make sure, because of the past, that, as Ms. Napolitano indicated, that the money that is going into Haiti is going to help the people of Haiti.
Now, I, for one, truly hope that we are able to work together, as has been complimented here a number of times, in a bipartisan manner, that we will be able to work here with Ms. Lee's amendment because what it does is assure that we are going to give money to NGOs so that it gets to the people that we want to help and not go into the pockets of someone who just may become a member of government. And I know some of my colleagues on the other side were concerned in the past about how much money we have spent on Haiti and who has gotten it and why it has not gotten to the people that we want it to get to.
Well, I think that we have an opportunity now to do something that is good for all of the people of Haiti, and, overall, a few amendments that we have here, I think, are good. But, you know, I surely hope that as we move forward that we can make sure that the money gets to the people, and I think that the best way to do that at this given time is through NGOs until we can see that we have elections and we have a government of people that will truly represent the country, and the money would not go in their pockets. Thank you, and I yield back.
Mr. BURTON. Thank you, Mr. Meeks.
Are there any other comments? Mr. Payne.
Mr. PAYNE. I would like to echo what has been said. I think that because there is an interim government that is there for the time being, I would certainly urge that the funds also be dispensed through NGOs. We had a discussion about water projects in the Full Committee earlier today, and Congressman Rohrabacher was very passionate about having the money go through NGOs. I think this is certainly an example of a country that should have, even though in the past, the funds did go to NGOs there, and the amount of funds lost were not as great as people amplified them to be. However, to ensure that the funds go to the people, and there certainly are adequate religious institutions-the Catholic church is very strong there, other NGOs like Ready for the World, a Protestant-run NGO that is very expansive in the country-I think there are adequate groups to fund the money through. So I would urge that we consider that.
Also, I would like to, since we are talking about Haiti, commend Brazil and Latin Americans who have been providing the peacekeeping. As you now, the United States went along with the ouster of Aristide, and there was total chaos, but, once again, showing the strength of the United Nations that urged Latin America to come forward, and, as you know, Brazil is a leading component, and all of the military, the peacekeepers, are all from Latin America, led by Brazil, led by Colombia, led by other Latin American countries. We have no military people in those operations.
So, once again, it shows, in my opinion, the necessity of a strong U.N, especially in instances like this, because had it not been for Latin Americans, we would certainly have thousands of people try-
ing to reach the shores of Florida in boats, with our Coast Guard having to take actions to prevent that from happening. Thank you very much.
Mr. BURTON. Thank you, Mr. Payne. Are there any other comments?
Mr. BURTON. If not, Mr. Meeks has, I think, two amendments which we have reviewed and are willing to accept. Would you like to explain those amendments, Mr. Meeks?
Mr. MEEKS. Yes, Mr. Chairman. Thank you.
The first amendment, Mr. Chairman, is about securing commercial ports because Haiti cannot be developed without access to the two major ports: Port-au-Prince and Port Cap-Haitian. It only makes good sense that we secure the ports, the roads, and the roads leading to the ports and the waterways so that commerce can resume.
We often talk about and we look at how opportunities happen, and you want to create some jobs there. This is the first step in doing that. The jobs derived from this will help to jump-start the economy, and the citizens can begin to return to their lives. The amendment will allow ships to dock safely, load and unload goods, and put Haitians back to work. It will provide for the development and maintenance of the roads leading to and from both ports, work with the Department of Homeland Security to ensure the safety of containers, and work with the United Nations to patrol and protect the waters of the port.
I ask for your support on this reasonable and responsible amendment that will benefit the Western Hemisphere, but most importantly, will benefit the people of Haiti, the poorest country in the Western Hemisphere, because the way that we get rid of the guns and the violence is by putting people to work and giving them hope and opportunity, and I thank you, Mr. Chairman.
Mr. BURTON. Mr. Meeks, would you care to go ahead and explain briefly your second amendment, and we will cover them both at the same time en bloc?
Mr. MEEKS. My second amendment is very simple, just basically, in section 2(d)(1)(A), insert before the semicolon the following: "or equivalent thereof." We were talking about those who have an education or 4-year degree in America, but we know that there are Haitians and others all over the world, some in Canada, some in England, some in other areas, and people all over the world who may be interested in coming back to work in Haiti. So we do not want to just limit this to individuals who may have 4-year degrees in America. We want to make sure that there is opportunity for those all over and that Haitians can come back to Haiti, in particular, in my estimation, to give back to their country and to work to make sure that we can pick back up the commerce and pick back up living conditions there.
[The amendments referred to follow:]
AMENDMENT TO H.R. 611 OFFERED BY MR. MEEKS
In section 2(c), insert before the period at the end
the following: ", including a special emphasis on commercial ports under subsection (i)".
In section 2, redesignate subsection (i) as subsection
In section 2, insert after subsection (h) the folloNing new subsection:
1 (i) COMMERCIAL PORTS.2 (1) DESCRIPTION.---A commercial port in Haiti
3 refers to Haiti's commercial ports at Port-au-Prince
4 and Cap-Haitian.
5 (2) REQUIREMENTS RELATING TO RECON6 STRUCTION ANI) DEVELOPMENT.7 (A) IN GENERAL.-With respect to the re8 construction and development of Haiti's com9 mercial ports referred to in subsection (c)(5),
10 the Director shall help11 (i) ensure that such ports are secure
12 for ships to dock and to load and unload
13 goods; and
1 (ii) develop and maintain the roads
2 leading to such ports.
3 (B) COOPERATION WITH TIIE UNITED NA4 TIONS AND TIIE DEPARTMENT OF IIOMEIAND
5 SECURITY.-To the greatest extent practicable,
6 the Director shall coordinate with appropriate
7 officials from the United Nations in Haiti and
8 the Department of Homeland Security to en9 sure that security at such ports is provided by
10 the United Nations and the Department, in11 eluding patrolling and protecting the waters of
12 such ports.
AMENDMENT TO H.R. 611 OFFERED BY MR. MEEKS
In section 2(d)(1)(A), insert before the semicolon the following: "or equivalent thereof".
Mr. BURTON. Any discussion on the amendments offered by Mr. Meeks?
Mr. BURTON. If not, the question comes on the amendments as offered by Mr. Meeks. We will consider them en bloc. All of those in favor will signify by saying aye. [A chorus of ayes.]
Mr. BURTON. Those opposed will signify by saying no. [No response.]
Mr. BURTON. In the opinion of the Chair, the ayes have it. The ayes have it, and the amendments are agreed to. Ms. Lee, I believe you have an amendment. Ms. LEE. Yes, Mr. Chairman, I do have an amendment at the desk, and I ask unanimous consentMr. BURTON. Without objections. [The amendment referred to follows:]
AMENDMENT TO H.R. 611
OFFERED BY MS. LEE
In section 2(a), insert "democratically elected" before "Government of Haiti".
In section 2(c), strike the matter preceding paragraph (1), and insert the following: "Except as provided in section 4, the Director shall coordinate with appropriate international nongovernmental organizations and representatives of civil society or with appropriate officials from the democratically elected Government of Haiti to identify ministries and agencies of the democratically elected Government of Haiti that require assistance concerning the reconstruction and development in Haiti with respect to-".
In section 3(b), strike "If' and insert "Except as provided in section 4, if".
In section 3(b), insert "democratically elected" before "Government of Haiti".
At the end of the bill, add the following new section:
1 SEC. 4. DEMOCRATICALLY ELECTED GOVERNMENT OF
3 (a) DESCIIPTION.-In this Act, the term "democrat4 ically elected Government of Haiti" means a government
5 that6 (1) results from free and fair elections7 (A) conducted under the supervision of
8 internationally recognized observers; and
9 (B) in which10 (i) opposition parties were permitted
11 ample time to organize and campaign for
12 such elections; and
13 (ii) all candidates were permitted full
14 access to the media;
15 (2) is showing respect for the basic civil lib16 erties and human rights of the citizens of the coun17 try;
18 (3) is committed to making constitutional
19 changes that would ensure regular free and fair elec20 tions and the full enjoyment of basic civil liberties
21 and human rights by the citizens of the country; and
22 (4) has made demonstrable progress in estab23 fishing an independent judiciary.
24 (b) EXCEPTION.-25 (1) IN GENERAL.-Until such time as a demo26 cratically elected government described in subsection
1 (a) exists in Haiti, any assistance, coordination, or
2 cooperation related to economic and infrastructure
3 reconstruction and development authorized under
4 this Act is authorized to be carried out in coordina5 tion or cooperation with the Government of Haiti.
6 (2) RULE OF CONSTRUCTION.-Nothing in
7 paragraph (1) shall be construed as authorizing any
8 direct United States foreign assistance to a non9 democratically elected Government of Haiti.
Ms. LEE. Thank you very much. Mr. Chairman, I thank you for your leadership on so many tough issues impacting the Western Hemisphere and especially for your leadership on United States policy toward Haiti. I am in complete agreement with my colleagues, with yourself, and both sides of the aisle that Haiti is in desperate need of recovery and of assistance. The recovery must include economic, social, and political development for the Haitian people to advance.
So this amendment would advance this major recovery effort by doing three things. It will ensure that U.S. funding and program assistance actually reaches the Haitian people, and it would reach the Haitian people through this amendment because we have designated that it go through either an NGO or through a democratically-elected government. And it also defines the same standard of what a democratically-elected government constitutes as what we use with regard to Cuba. It also requires that these funds be dis-. tributed through civil society and international nongovernmental organizations if there is no accountable democratically-elected government.
Why do we need this amendment? Mr. Chairman, let me just say, I have no prior authorship on this, but for the most part, we wrote quite a bit of this bill, and so I am very proud of the actual content of the bill. But in many ways, it has been changed, and so what this amendment does, with the support of the two Democratic co-sponsors, Congressman Rangel and Congressman Davis, is to make sure that when we move forward with this, and if we really believe that Haiti needs this direct economic and social infrastructure and healthcare development, that we authorize funds for a democratically-elected government or for civil society or NGOs.
So I am asking you to join me in support of this amendment which would provide direct funding to the people of Haiti through the hands of those who best represent them, and that is either a democratically-elected government or a civil society or NGOs.
Mr. BURTON. Is there further discussion on the amendment by Ms. Lee?
Mr. BURTON. If there is no further discussion on the amendment, all those in favor will signify by saying aye.
[A chorus of ayes.]
Mr. BURTON. Those opposed will signify by saying no. [A chorus of noes.]
Ms. LEE. May I have a rollcall?
Mr. BURTON. The lady has asked for a rollcall vote, and a rollcall vote will be granted. The clerk will call the roll. Ms. RUSH. Mr. Burton?
Mr. BURTON. No.
Ms. RUSH. Mr. Burton votes no. Mr. Paul? [No response.]
Ms. RUSH. Mr. Weller?
Mr. WELLER. No.
Ms. RUSH. Mr. Weller votes no. Ms. Harris? Ms. HARRIS. No.
Ms. RUSH. Ms. Harris votes no. Mr. Leach? [No response.]
Ms. RUSH. Mr. Smith?
Mr. SMITH OF NEW JERSEY. No. Ms. RUSH. Mr. Smith votes no. Ms. Ros-Lehtinen? Ms. ROS-LEHTINEN. No. Ms. RUSH. Ms. Ros-Lehtinen votes no. Mr. Mack? Mr. MACK. No.
Ms. RUSH. Mr. Mack votes no. Mr. McCaul? Mr. MCCAUL. No. Ms. RUSH. Mr. McCaul votes no. Mr. Menendez? Mr. MENENDEZ. Aye. Ms. RUSH. Mr. Menendez votes yes. Ms. Napolitano? Ms. NAPOLITANO. Yes. Ms. RUSH. Ms. Napolitano votes yes. Mr. Meeks? Mr. MEEKS. Aye. Ms. RUSH. Mr. Meeks votes yes. Mr. Faleomavaega? [No response.]
Ms. RUSH. Mr. Payne? Mr. PAYNE. Aye. Ms. RUSH. Mr. Payne votes yes. Mr. Delahunt? Mr. DELAHUNT. Aye. Ms. RUSH. Mr. Delahunt votes yes. Ms. Lee? Ms. LEE. Aye.
Ms. RUSH. Ms. Lee votes yes. Mr. BURTON. The clerk will report. Ms. RUSH. On this vote, there are six ayes and seven noes. Mr. BURTON. The amendment fails for lack of a majority. Are there further amendments? [No response.]
Mr. BURTON. If there are no further amendments, the question occurs on the bill itself. All those in favor of the bill being reported to the Floor favorably, signify by saying aye. [A chorus of ayes.] Mr. BURTON. Those opposed, signify by saying no. [A chorus of noes.] Mr. BURTON. In the opinion of the Chair, the ayes have it. Ms. LEE. May I have a rollcall? Mr. BURTON. We will have a rollcall vote. The gentlelady has requested it, and it will be granted. The clerk will call the roll. Ms. RUSH. Mr. Burton? Mr. BURTON. Aye. Ms. RUSH. Mr. Burton votes yes. Mr. Paul? [No response.]
Ms. RUSH. Mr. Weller? Mr. WELLER. Aye. Ms. RUSH. Mr. Weller votes yes. Ms. Harris? Ms. HARRIS. Yes. Ms. RUSH. Ms. Harris votes yes. Mr. Leach? [No response.]
Ms. RUSH. Mr. Smith? Mr. SMITH OF NEW JERSEY. Yes. Ms. RUSH. Mr. Smith votes yes. Ms. Ros-Lehtinen? Ms. ROS-LEHTINEN. Yes. Ms. RUSH. Ms. Ros-Lehtinen votes yes. Mr. Mack? Mr. MACK. Yes.
Ms. RUSH. Mr. Mack votes no. Mr. McCaul?
Mr. MCCAUL. Yes.
Ms. RUSH. Mr. McCaul votes yes. Mr. Menendez?
Mr. MENENDEZ. I'll pass for the moment.
Ms. RUSH. Ms. Napolitano?
Ms. NAPOLITANO. Aye.
Ms. RUSH. Ms. Napolitano votes yes. Mr. Meeks? Mr. MEEKS. No.
Ms. RUSH. Mr. Meeks votes no. Mr. Faleomavaega?
Ms. RUSH. Mr. Payne? Mr. PAYNE. No.
Ms. RUSH. Mr. Payne votes no. Mr. Delahunt? Mr. DELAHUNT. No. Ms. RUSH. Mr. Delahunt votes no. Ms. Lee? Ms. LEE. No.
Ms. RUSH. Ms. Lee votes no. Ms. RUSH. Mr. Menendez? Mr. MENENDEZ. No. Ms. RUSH. Mr. Menendez votes no. Ms. NAPOLITANO. Mr. Chair, how am I recorded? Ms. RUSH. You voted yes. Ms. NAPOLITANO. Change to "no," please. Ms. RUSH. Ms. Napolitano votes no. Mr. BURTON. The clerk will report. Ms. RUSH. On this vote, there are seven "yes" votes and six "no" votes.
Mr. BURTON. The bill will be reported favorably to the Full Committee. Without objection, the bill is reported in the form of a single amendment in the nature of a substitute incorporating the amendments adopted here today, and without objection, the staff is directed to make any technical and conforming amendments as necessary.
If there is no further business to come before the Committee, we stand adjourned.
[Whereupon, at 3:30 p.m., the Subcommittee was adjourned.]