Rubio, Poe Introduce Bills to Improve Foreign Aid Through Greater Transparency and Accountability
Washington, DC, July 10, 2013
Bread for the World strongly supports the Foreign Aid Transparency and Accountability Act of 2013 (H.R. 2638/S. 1271), introduced today by Rep. Ted Poe (R-Texas) and Sen. Marco Rubio (R-Fla.). These coordinated House and Senate bills establish important guidelines to ensure that U.S. foreign assistance dollars are administered in a transparent, accountable, and effective way.
“Making all U.S. foreign assistance more transparent and accountable will help certify that money is used efficiently and justify to Congress and the American people the rationale for increased funding,” said Rev. David Beckmann, president of Bread for the World and co-chair of the Modernizing Foreign Assistance Network (MFAN). “We stand a good chance of getting this legislation passed this year. The fact that it is a bipartisan initiative makes it particularly meaningful to members of Bread for the World.”
Rep. Gerry Connolly (D-Va.) and Sen. Ben Cardin (D-Md.) are the lead cosponsors of the coordinated bills. A similar version was unanimously approved by the House of Representatives in the 112th Congress.
The legislation would require the U.S. president to establish uniform interagency guidelines across all U.S. foreign assistance programs and maintain a public website—known as the Foreign Assistance Dashboard (www.foreignassistance.gov)—with detailed information about how such assistance is used by program and country. Each relevant federal department or agency would be required to publish and update the dashboard quarterly with country assistance strategies, annual budget documents, budget obligations and expenditures, and evaluation reports for projects and programs.
“In an era of constrained budget resources, it is imperative that the U.S. get the most out of every dollar we spend on foreign assistance,” said MFAN co-chair Jim Kolbe of the German Marshall Fund. “The time has come for a set of common guidelines on the monitoring and evaluation of these programs across all agencies, as well as greater transparency for American taxpayers.”
“We thank the bipartisan congressional leadership for introducing this bill,” said Rev. Beckmann. “We urge Congress to pass these bills as soon as possible.”
Bread for the World is a collective Christian voice urging our nation's decision makers to end hunger at home and abroad.
Christopher Ford, Media Relations Manager, 202-688-1077
Fito Moreno, Media Relations Specialist, 202-688-1138