News Releases

Senate Adds $100 Million for AmeriCorps

Jul 09 2003

Murray co-sponsors measure restoring funds to volunteer program

(WASHINGTON, D.C.) – A measure co-sponsored by Sen. Patty Murray to provide $100 million to AmeriCorps has been adopted by the Senate Appropriations Committee as part of the 2003 Emergency Supplemental Appropriations bill.

The funding will help save hundreds of the community projects run by AmeriCorps volunteers throughout the country, including several projects in Washington state. Because of managerial problems, AmeriCorps announced last month that it would have to cut a number of volunteer positions.

In Washington state, those cuts included:

- The elimination of Community Youth Services-AmeriCorps Youth in Service (serving Thurston, Mason, and Lewis Counties)

- The elimination of Educational Service District (ESD) 101 – Spokane Service Team (serving Spokane County)

Together, these programs would lose 85 AmeriCorps members.

Furthermore, the state would see a reduction in Washington Reading Corps by 35 % (77 AmeriCorps members) and a reduction in the Washington Service Corps by 58% (244 AmeriCorps members).

Senator Murray, a strong supporter of AmeriCorps, joined other Senators last month in sending a letter to President Bush asking him to include funding for AmeriCorps in the Emergency Supplemental spending bill.

But while the President refused to request any such funding in the Supplemental spending bill sent to Congress today, Senator Murray and her colleagues on the Appropriations Committee added $100 million for AmeriCorps. The House has not yet acted on the legislation.

“AmeriCorps represents the best our country has to offer - service to our communities and to our fellow citizens,” Murray said. “I am proud that the Senate has taken the responsible step towards funding AmeriCorps and saving this vital national treasure. We should encourage more Americans to enter public service, and today the Senate paved the way towards keeping the door open to thousands of young people.”