March 05, 2010

Haiti Recovery Act Passes Senate

WASHINGTON, D.C. — The Haiti Recovery Act, legislation introduced by Senators Chris Dodd (D-CT) and Dick Lugar (R-IN), today passed the Senate by unanimous consent. The legislation would encourage the elimination of Haiti’s remaining debt to international financial institutions, currently totaling over $1 billion, and instruct these institutions to offer grants rather than loan assistance to Haiti, in order to end the debt-relief cycle.
“The people of Haiti face a long and difficult road ahead,” said Dodd.  “But today, the United States Senate made it clear that they will not have to walk that road alone.  Just as the worldwide outpouring of support helped to alleviate suffering in the days after the earthquake, this critical assistance will help make it possible for the Haitian people to build a brighter future in the years to come.”
“I commend Sen. Dodd for his efforts to move this legislation and other initiatives to help Haiti. The Senate will continue to assess measures that will help Haiti and develop greater stability and hopefully new opportunities. Dealing with Haiti’s crippling debt burden is an important initial step,” U.S. Senate Foreign Relations Committee Ranking Member Lugar said.
Additionally,  the Haiti Recovery Act calls on the Administration to support the creation of an international trust fund for Haiti, to support investment in infrastructure including the development of electric grids, roads, water and sanitation facilities, and reforestation initiatives.
Dodd is a senior member of Senate Foreign Relations Committee and the Chairman of the Subcommittee on Western Hemisphere, Peace Corps, and Global Narcotics Affairs.