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 You are in: Bureaus/Offices Reporting Directly to the Secretary > Deputy Secretary of State > Bureau of Resource Management > Releases on Resource Management > Remarks on Resource Management - Budget, Planning, Performance > 2005 Remarks on Resource Management - Budget, Planning, Performance

Special Briefing on State Department Portion of 2005 Budget Supplemental

Joe Bowab, Deputy Assistant Secretary for Resource Management
Eric Hembree, Deputy Assistant Secretary for Resource Management
Washington, DC
February 14, 2005

(3:40 p.m. EST)

MR. ERELI: Hello everybody, but not by popular demand, we have an on-the-record briefing with Deputy Assistant Secretary for Resource Management Joe Bowab and his able and willing colleague Eric Hembree, who will talk to us today about the President's supplemental budget request, which was presented to the Hill today.

MR. BOWAB: Which will be.

MR. ERELI: Which will be? So let's embargo this until it is actually presented. Do you prefer Joe? Is that what you?

MR. BOWAB: I don't care. Bill.

MR. ERELI: Bill?

QUESTION: He likes to be called Larry King.

QUESTION: Could we get the names again?

MR. ERELI: Yes. Joe Bowab, B-o-w-a-b, Deputy Assistant Secretary for Resource Management; and Eric Hembree, H-e-m-b-r-i-e.


MR. ERELI: Sorry, e-e, b-r-e-e. And your title, Eric?

QUESTION: H-e-m-b-r-e-e?

MR. HEMBREE: Same as his.

MR. ERELI: Yes. And he is also Deputy Assistant Secretary For Resource Management.

QUESTION: Is there a power struggle there?

MR. HEMBREE: There is a clear hierarchy, but --

MR. BOWAB: I do all the foreign assistance programs; Eric does all of the State operations programs.

QUESTION: Oh, okay. Just wondering. Hembree.

MR. ERELI: Hembree.

QUESTION: Okay. Not like the picture Helen Embree.


MR. ERELI: Joe will likely go over some of the highlights of the supplemental request, and then we'll just take your questions.

MR. BOWAB: Okay. The supplemental request will be leaving the White House soon en route to Capitol Hill. It's just shy of $82 billion, of which the State Department and Foreign Operations piece is $6.3 billion. And let me just give you some highlights of the $.3 billion.

5.6 of it covers State operations, foreign assistance programs, food aid, and the Broadcasting Board of Governors. There's $950 million in the supplemental for tsunami relief.

QUESTION: Is that part of the 5.6 or separate?

MR. BOWAB: No, that's separate.


MR. BOWAB: The 5.6 I discussed and the 950, of which the State Department and USAID will receive about 700 million of the 950 gets you to the 6.3.

QUESTION: Oh, yeah.

MR. BOWAB: The 700 million for State and USAID for the tsunami will cover USAID's expenses to date; in other words, reimburse those accounts. It'll cover about $226 million in DOD tsunami operations; and there will a small piece of it to work with our allies on a tsunami warning system.

QUESTION: I'm sorry. I'm not -- you said 950 million, of which 700 million is going to USAID.

MR. BOWAB: State and USAID.


QUESTION: How much for the tsunami warning system?

MR. BOWAB: I want to say it's, I don't know, somewhere between $22 and $25 million.

MR. HEMBREE: I was going to say, there's 24 left.

MR. BOWAB: Well, that's pretty good. Then that would have been a good range I gave you. Right?

The majority of the requests, $3.4 billion of the requests are for embassy-related programs in Iraq and security and reconstruction programs in Afghanistan. There's also $780 million in the requests for UN peacekeeping assessments.

QUESTION: How does that compare with recently?

MR. BOWAB: Well, let me finish it and then we can talk in specifics about it.

The remaining money out of the 6.3 that is in the supplemental is to cover coalition partners in the war on terror and to address unanticipated requirements such as those in Darfur and West Bank/Gaza. And that's the large overview.

QUESTION: All right. Can I ask a question? You want to --


QUESTION: The guy on the Hill is writing the main story for us. I don't know. You know, he speaks of appropriation directly to the Palestinian Authority. I had understood that the Palestinian money would go to -- go through, you know, Red Crescent and all those nice people. You're back to giving money directly to the Palestinian Authority?

MR. BOWAB: Well, let me say we wouldn't rule out --

MR. HEMBREE: He gave budget money to them for the most part.

MR. BOWAB: We would not rule out, if the requirement existed to do, and we've done this in the past, some type of specific budget support --


MR. BOWAB: With the Palestinians, because we've done it three separate times.

MR. HEMBREE: Exactly. December, yeah.

MR. BOWAB: But the purpose of this money is to continue doing the projects that we have continued to do with NGOs and PBOs, and things like that, in the West Bank and Gaza.

QUESTION: Got you.

QUESTION: This is the 200 million?

MR. BOWAB: Yes, there is 200 million in there.


QUESTION: For the Palestinians?

MR. BOWAB: For West Bank Gaza.

QUESTION: I don't know how these things are spelled out. Or are they spelled out? Do you have to spell this out or -- when you make a request do you say, give us 200 million for the Palestinians?

MR. BOWAB: You will see when the package goes from the President to the White House, which will end up on OMB's website, all of the specific appropriations language and the justification for that language was part of the package that gets sent over there.

So in other words, sometime this afternoon, when this package gets there and it's posted on OMB's website, all of the language and the money associated with it and the justification will be on the website.

QUESTION: But does the 5.6 billion, which includes coalition partners on the war on terror, does that also include 400 million for your Global Partners Fund?


QUESTION: And what is the Global Partners Fund? Is that sort of, we'll spend as the year goes along, a discretionary fund?

MR. BOWAB: Well, all of this is actually discretionary funding but --

QUESTION: I mean, but how would you describe it?

MR. BOWAB: There's countries that are currently in Iraq and Afghanistan, as part of the coalition, that have used a lot of their own defense spending to be there.

QUESTION: Such as?


QUESTION: NATO countries or?

MR. BOWAB: Such as --



MR. HEMBREE: Fiji, Poland.

MR. BOWAB: Ukraine, El Salvador, Bulgaria, Romania, there's a bunch of countries -- there's a lot of coalition countries that are in there.

QUESTION: And this is to reimburse them?

QUESTION: No, let him finish the thought.

MR. BOWAB: No, it's not to reimburse them.

QUESTION: Then what is it for?

MR. BOWAB: It's for countries that are experiencing significant, let's say, pain in their own budgets in being there.

QUESTION: All right. Because of that?

QUESTION: In Afghanistan?

MR. BOWAB: And Iraq.


MR. BOWAB: We could help them, assist them in alleviating some of that, the budget problems they have.


QUESTION: How many countries are involved?

QUESTION: Is part of this the 100 million to Poland for military modernization?

QUESTION: How many countries --

MR. BOWAB: I'm not -- I don't know anything about 100 million for Poland military modernization.

QUESTION: We had the same -- I was asked to ask you the same question. I've got it in shorthand. He calls it a "kitty for Condi." This -- to use at her discretion. It's a sum of money, but how it's dispensed is kind of up to -- it's the Secretary of State?

MR. BOWAB: Yeah, it's the --

QUESTION: That's what discretionary means.

MR. BOWAB: Yeah. That's discretionary, right.


MR. BOWAB: We have not named specific countries with specific dollar amounts.

QUESTION: Okay. That's the point, yeah.

QUESTION: Do the countries apply or is this determined by the federal government?

MR. HEMBREE: No, it will be determined by a number of things but not necessarily someone coming in once they see that the sup is up there and asking for money.

QUESTION: So there are not a specific number of recipient countries that are --


QUESTION: The 200 million -- sorry -- the 200 million put for the West Bank and Gaza, did you make a distinction did you make a distinction? Is there any of that money that's not going to the Palestinians directly or indirectly?

MR. BOWAB: No, I didn't make a distinction.

QUESTION: On the Sudan, are the figures, 242 for Darfur, and then another 100 for the southern area, are those correct?

MR. BOWAB: Elise, yeah, that's pretty good. Maybe you should brief on this, since --


QUESTION: Is the 240 --

MR. BOWAB: -- since you have all of the numbers.

QUESTION: I just wanted to check.

QUESTION: Oh, gee. We can wait till the website.


QUESTION: Of the 3. -- the 3.4 billion for the Iraqi Embassy and security and reconstruction in Afghanistan, is there -- how is that sort of divvied up?

MR. BOWAB: How is what -- I mean, why don't you cover the Iraq costs first?

MR. HEMBREE: Sure. The Iraq requests includes 690 million for operations, logistics and security for the U.S. mission, the operations there, and $58 million for building a permanent new embassy compound in Baghdad.

QUESTION: Did we purchase the embassy, or did we just take hold of it? That question has come up before, and this is as good a time as any to ask. How did we get this embassy structure, this palace that's used as an embassy?

MR. HEMBREE: The palace, as part of this request, and the reason for this request is --

QUESTION: I mean, none of this is to pay somebody who owns it, is it?

MR. HEMBREE: No, the -- this request is to construct a new embassy and then to vacate the current -- where we currently occupy the palace.

QUESTION: All right. So none of the money is to spruce it up until we're ready to make the move?

MR. HEMBREE: No, it's to construct a new embassy and then vacate what we currently occupy.

QUESTION: Let me ask one more question.

QUESTION: But there's more, isn't there?

MR. HEMBREE: On Iraq, on the operations side, that's pretty much it.

QUESTION: When the foreign aid numbers came out --

QUESTION: Hang on, that's only half --

QUESTION: Yeah, 3.4.

QUESTION: I mean, the 3.4 billion --

MR. HEMBREE: The remainder is in, I guess, the -- it's both a combination of Iraq and Afghanistan. The Afghanistan piece is --

MR. BOWAB: Why don't you cover the operations piece of Afghanistan? I'll cover the program piece.

MR. HEMBREE: Within Afghanistan, there is also $60 for enhanced security and operations for our embassy operations in Kabul.


MR. BOWAB: There's about $500 million for counternarcotics programs.

QUESTION: Is that a new program itself or addition to that?

MR. BOWAB: It's an acceleration of the program.

QUESTION: The same program using the -- I've heard that there's some dissatisfaction with the helicopter program that has been being used.

MR. BOWAB: Well, I mean, no one has agreed that. Are you talking about -- I don't know what you mean by helicopter program. What helicopter program are you talking about?

QUESTION: Someone was telling me about they don't like helicopters, that the --

MR. BOWAB: No, right now, the policy is, as far as whether we will do aerial spraying in Afghanistan versus manual eradication, that's still an ongoing dialogue.

QUESTION: But is it -- is there aerial spraying using helicopters, and it's possible to do something else? No, it's --

MR. BOWAB: Helicopters don't spray well.


QUESTION: Just a little off the wall. Today, in the beginning of the story in the Times, and in statements to that effect by the White House and State Department, the U.S. is vigorously stating, we say not starting something new, continuing, but you know, with some aggressive behavior, efforts to counter illicit activities by North Korea, like interdiction, try to stop narcotics trade, proliferation. Is this reflected in this supplemental, new money to help the U.S., in coordination with other countries, try to put -- I called it pressure -- but try to encounter what the North Koreans allegedly are doing illegally, internationally? Where does that money come from?

MR. BOWAB: I'm not quite sure what you're talking about, bud.

QUESTION: Oh, I thought maybe you read the paper today. It was the lead -- the second lead in the Times, and the State-White House Bulletin verified it.

MR. BOWAB: I didn't read -- I haven't read the article.

QUESTION: Okay. All right. I just -- since it's a current story, I thought I'd ask.

MR. HEMBREE: But it doesn't have anything to do with the supplemental.

QUESTION: Well, I just -- I thought if the Times is right, there's a new impetus here, maybe you've got to give money to support the new impetus.

MR. HEMBREE: Not in the supplemental.

QUESTION: Is that the complete Afghanistan?

MR. HEMBREE: No, there is almost $800 million in there, just shy of $800 million, for reconstruction and economic development activities.


MR. BOWAB: Afghanistan.

QUESTION: No, I mean and Iraq?


QUESTION: That's Afghanistan.

MR. BOWAB: There's no program, there's no reconstruction, no program money for Iraq in the supplemental.

QUESTION: Okay, so then, the 3.4 is for the embassy construction and all that stuff, and then the Afghan portion?

MR. BOWAB: 1.4, almost 1.4 is for Iraq, which is made up totally of --

QUESTION: Yeah, got it.

MR. BOWAB: -- the embassy and the operations there, and there's a little bit of operating expenses for USAID and their IG.

QUESTION: Do you know when the new embassy reconstruction, the -- what's the schedule?

MR. HEMBREE: The new embassy should be constructed within 24 months of the receipt of the funds.

MR. BOWAB: There's -- you want me to finish Afghanistan?


MR. BOWAB: There's $400 million in there for police training. And there's about $280 million in there for democracy and governance activities. That's Afghanistan.

QUESTION: Are there any significant boosts in the supplemental foreign aid because some of the countries, generally given sizeable foreign aid, did not get it in the original budget, and someone in the building told me that the supplemental will make up some of that. And I'm thinking of Pakistan, in particular.

MR. BOWAB: Well, let me make a general statement. If you look at -- we briefed you on the '06 budget, if you look at --


MR. BOWAB: -- if you looked at the '06 budget, you can't look through the '06 budget and find somewhere where you would think that the supplemental would somehow make up for a shortfall in the '06 budget.

QUESTION: But this is a supplemental to the '05 budget.

MR. BOWAB: Yeah, but his question was, because maybe someone got shorted in '06.

QUESTION: Yeah, we'll get to it in a couple of weeks.

MR. BOWAB: Yeah. No, I mean, obviously, look at the budget. And nothing's going to point you to, well, they gave more money to Afghanistan or they gave more money here because of that.

QUESTION: Okay. So there's actually more in the supplemental for Afghanistan than for Iraq?


QUESTION: Just got left over Iraq money.

MR. BOWAB: Now, you've got to remember that there's a DOD component of this supplemental, and DOD is doing things in Iraq also. But from the international affairs perspective, yes, Afghanistan's number is larger than Iraq's.

QUESTION: Anything in this for Ukraine? Anything in this for Ukraine?

MR. HEMBREE: Yeah, there actually is. There's $60 million in it for Ukraine.

QUESTION: And -- for what?

MR. BOWAB: For a number of different programs.

QUESTION: Such as?

QUESTION: Connected with Iraq?

MR. BOWAB: No. Connected with the elections and the support for the elections that we just had.

QUESTION: So is that --

MR. BOWAB: All regular-type programs that we normally would fund under the Freedom Support Act.

QUESTION: Is this from money -- when you talk about --

MR. BOWAB: Nothing special, nothing --

QUESTION: No, but when you talk about support for the elections that they just had, are you talking about money that you already spent that you're making up for, or --


QUESTION: New programs, democracy, programs --

MR. BOWAB: Yes, new programs.

QUESTION: Any others in that general category? Of course -- well, I mean, any other showing tendencies toward democracy you want to reward with a few extra bucks? You've got the Palestinians here, you have Ukraine. Iraq, of course, is a bigger thing that Afghanistan.

MR. BOWAB: And coalition partners that are going to be identified in the sup also.


MR. HEMBREE: No, that's it.

QUESTION: That pretty much covers it.

QUESTION: Nothing for Syria. (Laughter.)

QUESTION: For Jordan? 200 for Jordan?

QUESTION: Oh, yeah, Jordan is supposed to get 200.



QUESTION: And 150 for Pakistan.


QUESTION: What was that last one?

QUESTION: Pakistan, 150 Pakistan.

QUESTION: Can I ask, is it normal that you do your -- you put your UN peacekeeping assessment in a supplemental rather than in the major -- in the regular budget?

MR. HEMBREE: No. We try to budget for peacekeeping assessments, as we know them. In this case, there were four missions that were -- either began or were -- are being planned, since we submitted the FY '05 President's budget. Those are the missions in Haiti, Burundi, Cote d'Ivoire, and the planned mission for Sudan/Darfur. Those new missions are what's generating the need for supplemental funds.

QUESTION: Are there any other unanticipated requirements of significance?

MR. BOWAB: That's in the sup? No. And I think we've almost covered every number that's in there. Have we missed any numbers? (Laughter.)

QUESTION: I was wondering also why you put in the Broadcasting Board of Governors in your supplemental, why that wouldn't just be in your normal?

MR. BOWAB: Well, that was something that we didn't do. That was something that the Broadcasting Board of Governors worked through the Office of Management and Budget. We don't -- we are not the advocate, as far as budgeting for the Broadcasting Board of Governors. They are for themselves.

QUESTION: How much are you giving them?

MR. BOWAB: I think it's, like, 7.4, something --


MR. BOWAB: 7.5.

QUESTION: Can we go back to Palestinian aid? Last week, the announcement was, what, $240 million or something?

MR. BOWAB: No, 50.

QUESTION: 50, including 50 that's going to be spent out of reprogramming of funds right now, is that right?

MR. BOWAB: No, 350, of which 150 is in the '06 budget submission, and 200 in the supplemental.


QUESTION: So this is -- this 200 is part of what she was announcing --

MR. BOWAB: It's part of what the Secretary -- President announced at the State of the Union. He announced the 350 in the State of the Union.

QUESTION: How much of a breakdown would be available about how that money will be spent?

MR. BOWAB: The package that the White House is going to send to the Congress has some pretty well detailed stuff in it about how the funding will be used. Not in every case does it, of course, have it all broken down, but it does have some details on how the money will be spent.

QUESTION: And how we can we get that?

MR. BOWAB: It will be on the White House website sometime tonight. I mean, we can't -- we've gone about as far as we can until this package is actually released. This package hasn't even been released yet. And if we're lucky, by the time we're finished here, the President would have signed the package and it would have been gone. (Laughter.)

QUESTION: Throw your remarks away. It's been overtaken by events.

I guess that -- are we done?

QUESTION: One last question. The security costs for the Iraqi embassy, the embassy in Iraq, and construction of the embassy, those numbers seem very similar to, like, the overall costs in this current budget proposed for '06.

MR. BOWAB: I hope not.

QUESTION: I only say that because, I mean, I'm still going back in my memory, obviously, I don't have the books here in front of me. But I seem to recall that worldwide security upgrades for the '06 request were almost in the 600-million range, which is comparable to what you have for just one embassy in Iraq.

MR. BOWAB: Yeah, but the money for the embassy in Iraq is to build it, not to protect it.

QUESTION: Well, no, no -- but also, I mean, there's two items, and you've got the two, you've got the 600 million for construction of the embassy, but in addition to that, 600 for opportunities and security.

MR. BOWAB: Right. Why don't you tell him why the ops is different now than normal?

MR. HEMBREE: The operations for the embassy?

MR. BOWAB: Yeah, why the -- yeah.

MR. HEMBREE: Well, I mean, the operations for the new embassy cover, really, the extraordinary security costs and the logistics support, the life support for the folks that are on the ground there. So it's really an extraordinary embassy operation, compared to what would be a normal embassy.

QUESTION: I mean, the numbers are still in the thousand range, is that what we have?

MR. HEMBREE: Right. And, you know, they're --

QUESTION: And that's strictly just State (inaudible), not --

MR. HEMBREE: Well, that's the mission as a whole. You know, there's other agencies that are there and also large contracts staff and special hires.

QUESTION: The Mission as a whole is 3,700.

MR. HEMBREE: The folks that are in the U.S. Mission, it's about 1,500 folks.

QUESTION: Do you remember where it ranks in size among U.S. embassies?

MR. HEMBREE: I don't have a number for you.


QUESTION: But the 690 was to keep -- is additional money to -- operating costs.

MR. HEMBREE: Right. 290 of it is to continue operations through the end of this fiscal year; and then another 400 million is to carry operations for the extraordinary costs in FY '06. The FY '06 President's budget includes 65 million to establish a funding base for basic embassy operations with the idea that we will get to basic embassy operations in the -- at some point.

QUESTION: What is the number for the basic?

MR. HEMBREE: 65 million.

QUESTION: 65 million. So the 400 just reflects the unstable security situation?

MR. HEMBREE: The security and the logistics, yes.


MR. BOWAB: And the extraordinary size of the embassy.

QUESTION: Well, that's what I'm asking. Is it -- what is it, the second, third?

QUESTION: No, it's like, the biggest.

QUESTION: Bigger than the British -- the Embassy in London?

QUESTION: Oh yeah, I mean, it's massive. It's --

MR. HEMBREE: Depends how you count it. FSOs --

MR. BOWAB: People and size.

MR. HEMBREE: No, contractors. Depends.

QUESTION: You're talking about people in the building, though --

QUESTION: People in the building is a good way to measure.

QUESTION: That's 3,700, is what I --

QUESTION: And when you said that, it was stunning.



QUESTION: Thank you.

MR. BOWAB: Thank you.

MR. HEMBREE: Thank you very much. Appreciate it.


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