Press Release

Rep. Cuellar Announces More than $157.5 Million to Strengthen U.S.-Mexico Relations

$10.5 million above Fiscal Year 2016 to support economic development and reduce illegal immigration

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WASHINGTON, July 20, 2016 | Rafael Benavides ((956) 725-0639) | comments

Today Congressman Henry Cuellar (D-TX-28) announced that he helped secure more than $157.5 million, as well as important language in the State, Foreign Operations and Related Agencies Appropriations Act for fiscal year 2017 which will strengthen the partnership between the U.S. and Mexico.  This funding is $10.5 million above last year’s funding amount in the Omnibus bill which passed in December.  In addition to this important funding, Congressman Cuellar included provisions calling on the State Department to increase academic, cultural, and professional exchanges between the U.S. and Mexico.

“I have always viewed the relationship between the United States and Mexico to be a special one and believe these continued and increased funds are a step in the right direction,” said Congressman Cuellar. “The expansion of this relationship benefits both the U.S. and Mexico economically and culturally. Due to this, I included many provisions in the recent appropriations bill to encourage further cooperation between our two nations. I would like to thank the State and Foreign Operations Subcommittee Chairwoman, Kay Granger (R-TX-12), and Ranking Member, Nita Lowey (D-NY-17), for helping me on these important issues.”

Provisions included by Congressman Cuellar (the full language can be found here):

  • Academic Exchanges with Mexico: The Congressman included a provision to encourage the expansion and increases of U.S.-Mexico academic exchange programs at the high school, college, and post graduate level. The committee provided a total of $602,790,000 for all academic exchange programs, a $11,890,000 increase from 2016
  • Cultural and Professional Exchanges with Mexico: The Congressman included language to encourage continued support of special academic, professional, and cultural exchange programs.
  • International Narcotics Control and Law Enforcement: The Congressman successfully included $100 million in funding to support Mexico’s ability to combat organized crime, drug trafficking, and border security. This funding will also assist the Mexican government in strengthening criminal justice institutions and building a modern border system.
  • Economic Support Funding: The Congressman secured $49,004,000 ($10 million more than 2016) to support Mexican programs regarding justice reform, promoting good governance, protecting human rights, implementing crime and violence prevention programs, and facilitating U.S.-Mexico trade and investment.
  • Microenterprise and Microfinance Programs: The Congressman included language to support microenterprise and microfinance programs in Mexico, which promote economic development in Mexico.

  • International Military Education and Training: The Congressman secured $1.5 million in funding to support military education and training programs in Mexico.
  • Foreign Military Financing Program: The Congressman secured $7 million in funding to support foreign military financing programs in Mexico.
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