Rep. Torres Applauds Investment in Central America as Part of President's Budget
February 2, 2015
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE Contact: Anna González
February 2, 2015 Phone: (202) 225 - 6161
REP. TORRES APPLAUDS INVESTMENT IN CENTRAL AMERICA AS PART OF PRESIDENT’S BUDGET
WASHINGTON, DC – Today, Rep. Norma J. Torres (D-CA) released the following statement applauding President Obama’s request for $1 billion as part of his Fiscal Year 2016 budget to invest in security, governance, and economic initiatives in Central America:
“The problems facing El Salvador, Guatemala, and Honduras extend far beyond poverty and a lack of economic opportunity. These countries also face extreme violence, rampant corruption, and weak government institutions. Without a deliberate, coordinated strategy from the United States incorporating regional partners and the governments of the Northern Triangle countries, the impact on the United States and the region will go far beyond refugees at our border. It is in both our economic and security interests to be a leader and effective partner in the region.
The President’s request is not a blank check. U.S. assistance will be focused on strengthening government institutions and rule-of-law, improving community security and attacking organized crime, and promoting economic reforms to encourage private investment and economic growth in the region. These efforts must also include specific metrics for measuring the impact of our programs and resource allocations. Ultimately, success will be dependent on the countries taking ownership of the problems they face and showing the political will necessary to tackle systemic change.
As the President’s request makes its way through Congress, I urge my colleagues to support the President’s efforts and recognize what is at stake if we refuse to help. To that effect, in the coming days, I will be reaching out to my colleagues to raise awareness about the problems facing the region and better coordinate legislative efforts impacting Central America. Change in the region will not come quickly, but it is a worthwhile and necessary endeavor.”
Born in Escuintla, Guatemala, Rep. Torres represents the 35th District of California, comprising eastern portions of Los Angeles County and parts of San Bernadino County.