SOMBER UPDATE ON PEACE CORPS FY 2004 FUNDING

Peace Corps Online: Peace Corps News: Headlines: Peace Corps Headlines - 2003: July 2003 Peace Corps Headlines: July 15, 2003 - NPCA Advocacy Listserv: Call Congress - Peace Corps Funding in Trouble: SOMBER UPDATE ON PEACE CORPS FY 2004 FUNDING

By Lauren Hale (laurenhale) on Tuesday, July 15, 2003 - 12:16 am: Edit Post

UPDATE TO PCOL POSTING

Many thanks to PCOL for posting the NPCA advocacy newsletter item and action alert about Congressional funding for the Peace Corps in Fiscal Year 2004. Below is an update about what has happened since the July 5 PCOL posting. The FY2004 foreign operations appropriations bill, which funds the Peace Corps and other foreign assistance, is in trouble.

** On July 10, the Foreign Operations Subcommittee of the House Appropriations Committee approved an FY 2004 spending bill that would fund foreign operations at $17.1 billion, which is $1.8 billion below the President’s request of $18.9 billion. The bill would fund the Peace Corps at $314 million, which is $45 million below the President’s request of $359 million.

** The next step for the FY 2004 foreign operations appropriations bill in the House is a markup by the full House Appropriations Committee. The House Appropriations Committee is scheduled to markup (review and possibly amend) the bill on Wednesday, July 16.

** The Foreign Operations Subcommittee of the Senate Appropriations Committee will meet on Thursday, July 17, to markup its version of the FY2004 foreign operations appropriations bill.

The Library of Congress THOMAS website has posted a chart on the status of all the FY2004 appropriations bill. You can track the progress of all the bills – including foreign operations –through the House and the Senate and then to conference and passage of final legislation by both chambers. THOMAS provides links to markup highlights, texts of the bills, and Committee reports as that information becomes available. The chart is at
http://thomas.loc.gov/home/approp/app04.html

IMPORTANT NOTE: Some have asked why it is necessary to advocate for an appropriations bill when they are already advocating for the Peace Corps charter bill. The two bills accomplish different purposes. The Peace Corps charter bill is an authorization bill. Authorization bills establish or continue government programs and determine policies for them. They also recommend spending levels, but these levels are not binding.

Appropriations bills provide funds for authorized programs. The Peace Corps receives its funding through the annual foreign operations appropriations bill, which also funds most other foreign assistance. More information about the appropriations process is available in the Spring 2003 NPCA Advocacy Training Manual at http://www.rpcv.org/pages/sitepage.cfm?id=735

Thanks again for PCOL’s help. Lauren Hale


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