By Gayle Lyles on May 20, 2009
© St. Louis Post-Dispatch
Every once in a while a piece of legislation comes along that can improve people’s lives at little cost to taxpayers. The Initiating Foreign Assistance Reform Act (H.R. 2139) is one of those bills. It would increase the effectiveness and efficiency of our foreign assistance programs that already save lives and give millions of people a chance to earn their way out of crippling poverty.
The foreign assistance act by which we now are guided was written in 1961. our global development policies are now are scattered across 12 departments, 25 agencies and 60 government offices.
The bipartisan legislation would require the Obama administration to create a strategy for global development that would ensure that development efforts are coordinated across the U.S. government, are better monitored and are more transparent. It would ensure that people who need help the most will get it faster and more efficiently.
It will take more than money to reduce the challenges the world faces in the 21st century. It will take a smarter strategy. H.R. 2139 deservs the swift and decisive support of Rep. Todd Akin, R-Town and Country, as a cosponsor for this bill. We all stand to gain from it.