100 Say 500 for 50th
By Jonathan Pearson on Wednesday, November 24th, 2010
100 members of the House of Representatives signed a letter authored by RPCV Congressman Sam Farr asking President Obama to “reaffirm his commitment (to the Peace Corps) by requesting at least $500 million for Fiscal Year 2012.” The letter was supported by the other four RPCVs in the House.
At the bottom of this post, you can read the text of the letter to Jacob Lew, Director of the Office of Managment and the Budget. The President will deliver his FY 12 budget to Congress early next year.
The following members of the House of Representatives signed the letter to the President. If you are a constituent, contact the office of your Congressman/woman and thank them for their continued support of the Peace Corps.
Signed the Letter Requesting $500 million for the Peace Corps - Arizona: Grijalva California: Capps, Chu, Costa, Davis, Eshoo, Farr, Garamendi, Harman, Honda, Lee, Matsui, McNerney, Miller, Napolitano, Roybal-Allard, Speier, Linda Sanchez, Loretta Sanchez, Schiff, Stark, Thompson, Woolsey Colorado: Perlmutter, Polis Connecticut: Courtney, DeLauro, Murphy District of Columbia: Norton Florida: Grayson, Hastings Georgia: Johnson, Lewis Hawaii: Hirono Illinois: Davis, Foster, Gutierrez, Hare, Quigley, Schakowsky Iowa: Loebsack Kentucky: Chandler, Yarmuth Maine: Pingree Maryland: Cummings, Edwards, Van Hollen Massachusetts: Capuano, Delahunt, Lynch, Markey, McGovern, Olver, Tierney Michigan: Conyers, Kildee, Levin, Schauer, Stupak Minnesota: Ellison, McCollum Nevada: Berkley New Hampshire: Shea-Porter New Jersey: Holt, Pallone, Payne, Sires New York: Hall, Hinchey, Maloney, McCarthy, Nadler, Tonko, Towns North Carolina: McIntyre, Price Ohio: Driehaus, Kaptur, Ryan, Sutton Oregon: Blumenauer, Wu Pennsylvania: Fattah, Kanjorski, Schwartz Tennessee: Cohen Texas: Doggett, Gonzalez, Jackson Lee, E.B. Johnson Vermont: Welch Virginia: Connolly, Moran Washington: Larsen, McDermott West Virginia: Mollohan Wisconsin: Baldwin, Moore, Petri Guam: Bordallo Commonwealth of the Northern Marianas: Sablan
(Text of House of Representatives letter to OMB Director Jacob Lew)
Dear Director Lew:
We applaud President Obama’s strong commitment to grow the Peace Corps for the 21st century. The President’s Fiscal Year 2010 and 2011 budget requests reflected that commitment and supported 1,000 new volunteer positions. Now, as Peace Corps prepares to celebrate its 50th Anniversary, we urge President Obama to reaffirm his commitment by requesting at least $500 million for Fiscal Year 2012.
In his Policy Directive on Global Development, President Obama identified the need to elevate development as a core pillar of American diplomacy. Dollar for dollar, Peace Corps volunteers are one of the Federal Government’s most effective agents of both development and diplomacy. Since Peace Corps’ inception, nearly 200,000 volunteers have served in over 135 countries, including key priority areas for the United States. Forty-six Peace Corps sites help administer the President’s Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief (PEPFAR) and nearly 25% of volunteers serve in more than a third of all countries considered Muslim. As we write this letter, 8,655 volunteers are serving in 77 countries.
With such a powerful track record, it is not surprising that the demand for Peace Corps has only increased. As of late 2010, Peace Corps reports that more than 20 countries have requested volunteers. In addition, nearly 13,500 Americans have applied to serve, but only about 4,500 will be placed. Robust funding is the key to fulfilling the President’s commitment and creating new and expanded Peace Corps programs in important countries where the United States seeks improved relations.
Peace Corps has also distinguished itself as an exceptional federal agency. This past summer, the agency released a comprehensive assessment that demonstrates responsiveness to priority United States interests, and also serves as a model of the transparency and accountability that President Obama has called for in the Federal Government. As this assessment reaffirms, Peace Corps is an agency capable of smart, strategic growth and expansion.
We appreciate the strong support President Obama has shown for Peace Corps to date. By recommitting to the Peace Corps in its 50th Anniversary Year, President Obama demonstrates the leadership and vision needed to usher President Kennedy’s original call to service into the 21st century. As you finalize the President’s Fiscal Year 2012 budget, we strongly urge you to recommend no less than $500 million for the Peace Corps.