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Foreign Aid Reform

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Foreign Aid Transparency and Accountability Act introduced in the House

Representative Ted Poe (R-TX, 2nd) introduced the Foreign Aid Transparency and Accountability Act of 2012 (H.R. 3159), which would establish guidelines for the monitoring and evaluation of U.S. foreign assistance programs. The bill would also require the Administration to establish and maintain a website providing detailed information on U.S. foreign assistance programs.

Access Representative Poe’s press release about the bill here.

USAID Administrator Shah and MCC CEO Yohannes testify before Congress on the FY 2012 Budget Requests

U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) Administrator Dr. Rajiv Shah and Millennium Challenge Corporation (MCC) CEO Daniel Yohannes testified before the House Committee on Foreign Affairs on the FY 2012 budget requests and future directions in foreign assistance.

USAID Administrator Shah testifies before Congress on the FY 2012 budget request for USAID

U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) Administrator Dr. Rajiv Shah testified before the House Committee on Appropriations, Subcommittee on State, Foreign Operations, and Related Programs on the FY 2012 budget request for USAID.

USAID Administrator Shah and MCC CEO Yohannes testify before Congress on the International Development Budget

U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) Administrator Dr. Rajiv Shah and Millennium Challenge Corporation (MCC) CEO Daniel Yohannes testified before the Senate Foreign Relations Committee on the FY 2012 budget requests and international development policy priorities.

Representative Berman releases draft foreign aid reform bill

Representative Howard Berman (D-CA, 28th; Ranking Member House Committee on Foreign Affairs) released a discussion draft of the Global Partnerships Act of 2011, a bill aimed at “replac[ing] the Foreign Assistance Act of 1961, which serves as the foundation for U.S. international aid programs” including those addressing global health. The proposed bill highlights health as a goal of foreign assistance and “lists 4 specific objectives in pursuit of that goal: reducing maternal and child mortality; preventing, treating, and controlling HIV/AIDS, malaria, tuberculosis, polio and other infectious and chronic diseases; preventing unintended pregnancies and improving reproductive health; and strengthening health systems.” Among other things, the proposed bill would also require the development of multiple development-related strategies (both country and sector specific) and would restructure the multiple accounts that provide funding for U.S. development programs.

Additional Information:

  • Access a press release announcing the release of the draft bill here.
  • Access additional resources including an Executive Summary, highlights of proposed reforms, and a section-by-section analysis of the draft bill here.
H.R. 2475 – Foreign Relations Authorization and Reform Act, Fiscal Years 2010 and 2011

The proposed bill authorizes appropriation levels for the Department of State for FY2010 and FY2011 and directs the Secretary of State to make specific reforms in U.S. foreign relation policy. Among other things, the proposed bill incorporates aspects of other recently introduced bills to protect girls by preventing child marriage.

GAO Report – Foreign Aid Reform: Comprehensive Strategy, Interagency Coordination, and Operational Improvements Would Bolster Current Efforts

At the request of Senator Robert Menendez (D-NJ), Senator Daniel Akaka (D-HI), and Representative Howard Berman (D-CA, 28th), the General Accountability Office (GAO) conducted an analysis of an effort initiated in January 2006 by then Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice “to better align foreign assistance programs with U.S. foreign policy.” Recommendations made by the GAO to improve this alignment process include developing a government wide foreign assistance strategy, improving interdepartmental communications, and establishing a long-term workforce management plan.

White House releases "Guidance on Collection of U.S. Foreign Assistance Data"

The White House Office of Management and Budget (OMB) released “Guidance on Collection of U.S. Foreign Assistance Data” detailing the data reporting requirements of all U.S. Government (USG) agencies providing foreign assistance in-line with the Administration’s Open Government efforts and in accordance with the International Aid Transparency Initiative (IATI), of which the U.S. is a signatory. Among other things, the guidance states that the Foreign Assistance Dashboard “will provide the public with greater access to foreign assistance data and establish a standardized reporting framework for all U.S. foreign assistance.”

Foreign Aid Transparency and Accountability Act passed by Senate Committee on Foreign Relations

The Senate Committee on Foreign Relations approved the “Foreign Aid Transparency and Accountability Act of 2012” (S. 3310). Originally introduced by Senator Richard Lugar (R-IN), the bill would establish guidelines for the monitoring and evaluation of U.S. foreign assistance programs and would require the Administration to establish and maintain a website providing detailed information on U.S. foreign assistance programs.

Learn about the House companion bill (H.R. 3159).