WASHINGTON, D.C. – U.S. House Majority Whip James E. Clyburn delivered the following remarks today on the Floor in advance of the U.S. House of Representatives' vote on H.R. 6531, the Targeting Resources to Communities in Need Act:
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As Prepared for Delivery
"I rise in support of H.R. 6531, the Targeting Resources to Communities in Need Act, a bipartisan bill that I introduced with Hal Rogers of Kentucky and Senators Cory Booker and Bob Portman to ensure that communities that have been determined to be suffering from persistent poverty received a more equitable share of federal investments.
"According to the Census Bureau, there are nearly 500 persistent poverty counties in our great country. They are defined as counties that have had a poverty rate of 20 percent or more for the last 30 years. These counties are as diverse as the country, including many white communities in Appalachia, African American communities in the South, Latino communities in the Southwest, and Native American communities throughout the West.
"In 2009, I included a provision in the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act requiring that at least 10 percent of the funds in three rural development accounts be spent in these counties. This became known as the 10-20-30 funding formula.
"The formula worked effectively, efficiently, and equitably; funding infrastructure projects that have been neglected for far too long.
"Over the past 12 years, Democrats and Republicans have worked together to expand this approach to nearly 20 appropriations accounts. Much of this progress was made when Mr. Rogers was Chair of the Appropriations Committee and I thank him for his leadership.
"This legislation would expand this 10-20-30 targeted funding approach throughout the federal government; recognizing that the best way to target funding in these areas may differ from program to program.
"Our bill gives discretion to federal agencies, led by OMB, to tailor the policy to the needs of each program, while requiring them to report to Congress on the progress being made to create and expand opportunities in these communities.
"This bill does not increase federal spending one iota. It simply targets federal resources to communities that are most in need.
"In closing, I thank my friend Hal Rogers for his collaboration, and I ask our colleagues for their support of this effort to make America’s greatness more accessible and affordable to all communities."