Congress Approves FY2006 Foreign Aid Bill

(November 14, 2005)

The House of Representatives and the Senate recently approved the FY06 Foreign Aid Bill that gave a total of $2.52 billion in assistance for Israel and $150 million for the Palestinians. The bill provides a $60 million increase for Foreign Military Financing for Israel to assist in their security and counter-terror efforts. After the bill passed overwhelmingly in both houses of Congress, the bill was sent to President Bush, who signed it into law on November 14. The House voted in favor of the bill 393-32, while the Senate voted unanimously 91-0. The bill also featured some policy provisions, including oversight items to ensure that aid to the Palestinians were spent and used in the proper manner. The FY06 that was sent to President Bush contained a total package of $20.9 billion in efforts to fight world terrorism, global AIDS, and bolster the economies of poor nations. The bill the President signed covers the period from Oct. 31, 2005, to Oct. 31, 2006. The American Israel Public Affairs Committee lobbied for the package, which included the mechanisms for congressional oversight on the Palestinian aid.

Source: AIPAC; THOMAS; Committee on Appropriations; JTA; Liz Sidoti, “Congress Sends Bush $20.9B Global Aid Bill,” The Washington Post, (November 10, 2005)