From www.kimandrewelliott.com

Senators Kerry and Lugar have plans for the BBG's "authorities" (updated)

Posted: 02 Feb 2010

"Senate Foreign Relations Committee Chairman John Kerry (D-MA) and Ranking Member Dick Lugar (R-IN) today introduced comprehensive bi-partisan legislation that will provide authority, policy guidance, and operational oversight to the State Department. ... 'This bill continues the Committee’s long-standing tradition of providing the State Department, the US Agency for International Development and US Broadcasting entities with the needed tools and personnel to address the ever-changing challenges they face,' said Ranking Member Lugar. ... Strengthen U.S. Public Diplomacy: Promotes a reexamination of the public diplomacy strategy for the United States to include publicly accessible American Centers, clarifies authorities relating to the Broadcasting Board of Governors, and enhances the contribution of scientific and technical knowledge to the pursuit of U.S. foreign policy objectives." Senator Kerry website, 29 January 2010. Same available at Senator Lugar website, 29 January 2010. What are they proposing to do to the BBG's "authorities"? I have not seen the full text of the legislation (can't find it at Thomas), so I await it with trepidation.
     Update: Trepidation unfounded. A helpful reader has pointed me to the the text, via Thomas, of the Kerry/Lugar authorization legislation. I was afraid there might be some plan to "coordinate" US international broadcasting with US public diplomacy. The US international broadcasting language is, unfortunately, in the public diplomacy section of the bill. But it deals with fairly mundane issues, such as employment, pay, contracting, and extending the grant authority of Radio Free Asia to September 2011. I notice that no cosponsor is listed along with Senator Kerry, even though the press release indicates he and Senator Lugar introduced the legislation.

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