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Text of the Support for Overseas Cooperative Development Act

This bill was introduced on September 27, 2000, in a previous session of Congress, but was not enacted. The text of the bill below is as of Sep 28, 2000 (Reported by Senate Committee).

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S 3072 RS

Calendar No. 843

106th CONGRESS

2d Session

S. 3072

To assist in the enhancement of the development and expansion of international economic assistance programs that utilize cooperatives and credit unions, and for other purposes.

IN THE SENATE OF THE UNITED STATES

September 19, 2000

Mr. GRAMS (for himself, Mr. HAGEL, and Mr. FEINGOLD) introduced the following bill; which was read twice and referred to the Committee on Foreign Relations

September 28 (legislative day, SEPTEMBER 22), 2000

Reported by Mr. HELMS without amendment


A BILL

To assist in the enhancement of the development and expansion of international economic assistance programs that utilize cooperatives and credit unions, and for other purposes.

    Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives of the United States of America in Congress assembled,

SECTION. 1. SHORT TITLE

    This Act may be cited as the ‘Support for Overseas Cooperative Development Act’.

SEC. 2. FINDINGS

    The Congress makes the following findings:

      (1) It is in the mutual economic interest of the United States and peoples in developing and transitional countries to promote cooperatives and credit unions.

      (2) Self-help institutions, including cooperatives and credit unions, provide enhanced opportunities for people to participate directly in democratic decision-making for their economic and social benefit through ownership and control of business enterprises and through the mobilization of local capital and savings and such organizations should be fully utilized in fostering free market principles and the adoption of self-help approaches to development.

      (3) The United States seeks to encourage broad-based economic and social development by creating and supporting--

        (A) agricultural cooperatives that provide a means to lift low income farmers and rural people out of poverty and to better integrate them into national economies;

        (B) credit union networks that serve people of limited means through safe savings and by extending credit to families and microenterprises;

        (C) electric and telephone cooperatives that provide rural customers with power and telecommunications services essential to economic development;

        (D) housing and community-based cooperatives that provide low income shelter and work opportunities for the urban poor; and

        (E) mutual and cooperative insurance companies that provide risk protection for life and property to under-served populations often through group policies.

SEC. 3. GENERAL PROVISIONS.

    (a) DECLARATIONS OF POLICY- The Congress supports the development and expansion of economic assistance programs that fully utilize cooperatives and credit unions, particularly those programs committed to--

      (1) international cooperative principles, democratic governance and involvement of women and ethnic minorities for economic and social development;

      (2) self-help mobilization of member savings and equity, retention of profits in the community, except those programs that are dependent on donor financing;

      (3) market-oriented and value-added activities with the potential to reach large numbers of low income people and help them enter into the mainstream economy;

      (4) strengthening the participation of rural and urban poor to contribute to their country’s economic development; and

      (5) utilization of technical assistance and training to better serve the member-owners.

    (b) DEVELOPMENT PRIORITIES- Section 111 of the Foreign Assistance Act of 1961 (22 U.S.C. 2151i) is amended by adding at the end the following: ‘In meeting the requirement of the preceding sentence, specific priority shall be given to the following:

      ‘(1) AGRICULTURE- Technical assistance to low income farmers who form and develop member-owned cooperatives for farm supplies, marketing and value-added processing.

      ‘(2) FINANCIAL SYSTEMS- The promotion of national credit union systems through credit union-to-credit union technical assistance that strengthens the ability of low income people and micro-entrepreneurs to save and to have access to credit for their own economic advancement.

      ‘(3) INFRASTRUCTURE- The support of rural electric and telecommunication cooperatives for access for rural people and villages that lack reliable electric and telecommunications services.

      ‘(4) HOUSING AND COMMUNITY SERVICES- The promotion of community-based cooperatives which provide employment opportunities and important services such as health clinics, self-help shelter, environmental improvements, group-owned businesses, and other activities.’.

SEC. 4. REPORT.

    Not later than 6 months after the date of enactment of this Act, the Administrator of the United States Agency for International Development, in consultation with the heads of other appropriate agencies, shall prepare and submit to Congress a report on the implementation of section 111 of the Foreign Assistance Act of 1961 (22 U.S.C. 2151i), as amended by section 3 of this Act.

Calendar No. 843

106th CONGRESS

2d Session

S. 3072

A BILL

To assist in the enhancement of the development and expansion of international economic assistance programs that utilize cooperatives and credit unions, and for other purposes.


September 28 (legislative day, SEPTEMBER 22), 2000

Reported without amendment