The Delta Grassroots Caucus (DGC) is a broad coalition of grassroots leaders in the eight-state Delta region. DGC is also a founding partner of the Economic Equality Caucus,
which advocates for economic equality across the USA.

Please Help Defeat the House Amendment to Eliminate the DRA

Posted on June 06, 2012 at 04:08 PM

Today there will be a vote in the US House of Representatives on an amendment offered by Congressman Chabot of Ohio to abolish the Delta Regional Authority and the other regional commissions. PLEASE HELP US DEFEAT THIS DESTRUCTIVE AMENDMENT!

Please contact your US Representatives and tell them to vote against this demagogical amendment that would harm so many hard-working people in the eight states of the Delta region, Appalachia, and other areas. The vote will probably be in the afternoon.

We have defeated efforts like this in the past and plan to do so this time as well. Federal Co-Chairman Chris Masingill, Alternate Federal Co-Chairman Mike Marshall of Missouri, Chief of Staff Bill Triplett and the entire DRA staff, the eight governors, and all the grassroots leaders in our region are enthusiastically supportive of the DRA for effectively using their small resources to promote economic development in the region.

Your phone call or email can be short and sweet. Just urge them to vote against the Chabot amendment to abolish the DRA and the other regional commissions, because these agencies do a great job in helping the people of the Delta and Appalachia–the two most economically distressed regions in the country that are predominantly. Among their many beneficial activities, these agencies help create jobs, and it makes no sense to cut relatively small, inexpensive programs that create jobs when we are in a recession.

Rep. Chabot erroneously alleged that these programs are “duplications” of other government programs, but this is false and utterly ridiculous. The DRA supplements and helps coordinate the work of other government programs. If you want to add some facts and figures when you contact your Members, here is some additional information:

The DRA’s budget is approximately $12 milllion through energy and water appropriations and another sum of approximately $3 million through USDA Rural Development, so these are very tiny parts of the federal budget. It is ludicrous to argue that abolishing an exemplary but small program like this would do anything to help our deficits problem.

Considering the relatively small budget they have to work with, they have stretched their dollars a very long way at the DRA. To cite several examples:

-Targeted investments in each of the eight states created over 6000 jobs and retained nearly the same number of jobs. With a leverage ratio of 23:1, the Delta Regional Authority leveraged $1.4 billion in private investment with DRA projects and helped 17,000 families gain access to clean water and sewer service.

-The DRA developed extensive strategic plans on broadband, transportation and other infrastructure, and the Delta Doctors Program has placed over 150 doctors in underserved areas in the region without any additional appropriations costs. Please continue to remind your representatives in Congress of the importance of supporting the DRA funding.

We would like to praise Congressman Hal Rogers of Kentucky, who is chairman of the US House Appropriations Committee, and who is a stalwart defender of the ARC, DRA and other regional commissions. Appalachia and the Delta stand united on this issue!

The DRA does many other valuable activities in coordinating programs throughout the program and disseminating valuable information about our regional issues on a regular basis. Help us keep the DRA in business so they can continue their diligent and constructive work. Lee Powell and Board of Directors, Delta Grassroots Caucus (202) 360-6347