February 2006

 President Bush’s FY 2007 budget proposal, released this morning, requests $474.288 million for the educational and cultural exchange programs administered by the Department of State’s Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs, the second year in a row the President has proposed an increase for these programs. The FY 2007 figure is an increase of $43.8 million over the President’s FY 2006 request and $42.4 million more than the $431.790 appropriated by Congress in FY 2006. (According to State Department budget documents distributed today, the estimated spending level for FY 2006, incorporating a 0.28 per cent rescission in the FY 2006 Science, State, Justice, Commerce Appropriations, as well as a one per cent across-the-board cut to all programs adopted by Congress last December, is $426.275 million).

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President Bush’s FY 2007 budget proposal, released this morning, requests $474.288 million for the educational and cultural exchange programs administered by the Department of State’s Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs, the second year in a row the President has proposed an increase for these programs. The FY 2007 figure is an increase of $43.8 million over the President’s FY 2006 request and $42.4 million more than the $431.790 appropriated by Congress in FY 2006. (According to State Department budget documents distributed today, the estimated spending level for FY 2006, incorporating a 0.28 per cent rescission in the FY 2006 Science, State, Justice, Commerce Appropriations, as well as a one per cent across-the-board cut to all programs adopted by Congress last December, is $426.275 million).

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On January 26, 2006, Sen. Richard Lugar (R-IN), Chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, introduced legislation to develop a U.S.-Poland Parliamentary Youth Exchange Program. The new program, if approved by Congress, would allow eligible participants to attend a public high school in the host country for one academic year, with an emphasis on studies in history, constitution and political development. Participants would be eligible, either during or after completion of their academic studies, for an internship in an “appropriate position” in the host country. The legislation, S. 2200, does not define the term “appropriate position.” The bill has been referred to the Senate Foreign Relations Committee for further consideration. There are currently no cosponsors.

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Senators Norm Coleman (R-MN) and Tim Johnson (D-SD) on Friday, introduced legislation to increase the tax deduction for host families of foreign exchange students from $50 to $200 per month. The bill, S. 2272, has been referred to the Senate Finance Committee for consideration.

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President Bush’s FY 2007 budget proposal, released this morning, requests $474.288 million for the educational and cultural exchange programs administered by the Department of State’s Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs, the second year in a row the President has proposed an increase for these programs. The FY 2007 figure is an increase of $43.8 million over the President’s FY 2006 request and $42.4 million more than the $431.790 appropriated by Congress in FY 2006. (According to State Department budget documents distributed today, the estimated spending level for FY 2006, incorporating a 0.28 per cent rescission in the FY 2006 Science, State, Justice, Commerce Appropriations, as well as a one per cent across-the-board cut to all programs adopted by Congress last December, is $426.275 million).

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In an appearance before the Senate Foreign Relations Committee to defend President Bush’s recently released FY 2007 budget request, Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice announced plans to fund more exchanges in Iran. Rice explained that the State Department plans “to request $75 million in supplemental funding for the year 2006 to support democracy in Iran. That money would enable us to increase our support for democracy and improve our radio broadcasting, begin satellite television broadcasts, increase the contacts between our peoples through expanded fellowships and scholarships for Iranian students, and to bolster our public diplomacy efforts.” She added, “In addition, I will be notifying that we plan to reprogram funds in 2007 to support the democratic aspirations of the Iranian people.”

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On January 26, 2006, Sen. Richard Lugar (R-IN), Chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, introduced legislation to develop a U.S.-Poland Parliamentary Youth Exchange Program. The new program, if approved by Congress, would allow eligible participants to attend a public high school in the host country for one academic year, with an emphasis on studies in history, constitution and political development. Participants would be eligible, either during or after completion of their academic studies, for an internship in an “appropriate position” in the host country. The legislation, S. 2200, does not define the term “appropriate position.” The bill has been referred to the Senate Foreign Relations Committee for further consideration. There are currently no cosponsors.

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The Alliance is pleased to welcome Pauliina Kreivi of Helsinki, Finland, who joined us earlier this week as a trainee. Pauliina’s training will focus on management, finances, and administrative matters.

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