President's FY 2010 Budget is $76 Million Less Than Target; Help Peace Corps Get More!
President Obama released his FY 2010 budget this morning and it includes a 10% or $34 million increase to the Peace Corps over FY 2009. This increase would take the Peace Corps budget from $340 million in 2009 to $374 million in 2010. While it is an increase, the recommended number would hardly stave off the present decline in new trainee/volunteer entry slots (just 3,600) let alone fuel the President’s stated goal of doubling the Peace Corps. We must send a message to the Congress that if they do not go above the President’s request, over 20 countries including Sierra Leone and Indonesia will have to wait even more years before Peace Corps Volunteers can help meet the needs of and serve the people of their countries..
While this increase is a step in the right direction, it is just a step… far short of the 32% increase ($110 million) 15,000 of you have been fighting for with the House Dear Colleague urging $450 million (89 signers), the Peace Corps Expansion Act 2009 (113 co-sponsors), and the Senate Dear Colleague letter (37 Senators). Congressman Sam Farr’s Bill, HR 1066, which calls for $450 million in FY 2010 now, has over 113 co-sponsors and it calls for $450 million. The Bill is the clearest expression of the desire of Americans to see greater funding to the Peace Corps.
Can we still get $450 million? Yes.
The President’s request is just a recommendation to Congress, by no means binding! In years past, Congress has not met the President’s request. The House and Senate Subcommittees for State, Foreign Operations and Related Programs have the full power to give the Peace Corps $450 million in FY 2010 and we must keep the pressure on members of those committees to urge Chairman Patrick Leahy (Senate) and Chairwoman Nita Lowey (House) to support the robust increase we need. Now our success depends on three things:
- The swift naming of a new director;
- Building support for $450 million among the 28 lawmakers in the House and Senate Appropriations Subcommittees for State, Foreign Operations and Related Programs; and
- Getting 218 co-sponsors on HR 1066, the Peace Corps Expansion Act which would authorize $450, $600 and $750 million to Peace Corps in FY 2010, 2011 and 2012.
Take Action Today
A sample letter and more information about the Subcommittee members are on our website.
Visit our website to see who's already signed up and learn more about HR1066.
Please contact Campaign Coordinator Rajeev Goyal ( firstname.lastname@example.org, 516-984-7138) once you have taken action.