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The summary below was written by the Congressional Research Service, which is a nonpartisan division of the Library of Congress.
12/1/2005--Public Law. Senator Paul Simon Water for the Poor Act of 2005 - (Sec. 4) Expresses the sense of Congress that: (1) in order to make the most effective use of amounts of official development assistance for water and sanitation and avoid waste and duplication, the United States should seek to establish innovative international coordination mechanisms based on best practices in other development sectors; and (2) the United States should greatly increase the amount of official development assistance.
(Sec. 5) Amends the Foreign Assistance Act of 1961 to authorize the President to furnish assistance for programs in developing countries to provide affordable and equitable access to safe water and sanitation by: (1) expanding affordable and equitable access to safe water and sanitation for underserved populations; (2) supporting the design, construction, and operation of water delivery and sanitation systems; (3) improving the safety and reliability of water supplies, including environmental management; and (4) improving the capacity of recipient governments and local communities.
Authorizes the President to use local currency payments under title I of the Agricultural Trade Development and Assistance Act of 1954 to provide such assistance.
(Sec. 6) Directs the President, through the Secretary of State, to develop a strategy to be implemented by the United States Agency for International Development (USAID) to further the U.S. foreign assistance objective of providing affordable and equitable access to safe water and sanitation in developing countries.
Sets forth: (1) strategy contents, including designation of high priority countries; and (2) reporting and monitoring requirements.
(Sec. 8) Expresses the sense of Congress that the Secretary should expand current programs and develop new programs to train local water and sanitation managers and other officials of recipient countries.
(Sec. 9) Expresses the sense of Congress that: (1) the United States should support U.N. agency water and sanitation activities, such as the United Nations Children's Fund (UNICEF), the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), and the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP); and (2) the Secretary of the Treasury should instruct each U.S. executive director at the multilateral development banks to encourage the inclusion of water and sanitation programs as a critical element of their development assistance.
(Sec. 10) Expresses the sense of Congress that U.S. programs to support and encourage efforts around the world to develop river basin, aquifer, and other watershed-wide mechanisms for governance and cooperation are critical components of long-term U.S. national security and should be expanded.
Directs the Secretary to report to the Committee on International Relations of the House of Representatives and the Committee on Foreign Relations of the Senate on U.S. efforts to promote programs that develop river basin, aquifer, and other watershed-wide mechanisms for governance and cooperation.
(Sec. 11) Authorizes additional appropriations beginning with FY2006 to carry out this Act.