May 22 2007

WASHINGTON -- U.S. Senator Lindsey Graham (R-South Carolina) today announced more than $4.2 million in grants to eleven Upward Bound programs in South Carolina.

Upward Bound serves high school students from low-income families; high school students from families in which neither parent holds a bachelors degree; and low-income, first-generation military veterans who are preparing to enter postsecondary education.  The goal of Upward Bound is to increase the rates at which participants enroll in and graduate from college.

The Upward Bound programs receiving federal grants are:

Benedict College: $435,076
Claflin University: $578,918
College of Charleston: $420,564
Greenville Technical College: $250,000
Horry-Georgetown Technical College: $278,079
Midlands Technical College: $296,334
Piedmont Technical College: Two grants- $220,000 and $287,881
Technical College of the Lowcountry: $372,439
Tri-County Technical College: $387,591
Voorhees College: $329,856
Williamsburg Technical College: $372,170

The grants were awarded by the U.S. Department of Education.

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May 22 2007

Fred Barnes of the Weekly Standard "In 2006, with Republicans in control of the Senate, an immigration bill that was anathema to most Republicans passed the Senate by a filibuster-proof margin. Now, oddly enough, with Democrats in charge, the Senate is likely to approve an immigration bill -- call it Kyl-Kennedy -- that from a Republican perspective represents a major improvement over the earlier bill in almost every conceivable way."

Fox News Channel Bill O'Reilly on the Compromise Legislation "The bottom line here is that if the bill doesn't pass, another ten million illegal aliens are going to come here in the next five years anyway. So the chaos we have now will double. The new immigration bill is unfair to those who've obeyed the rules. It is dangerous if not tightly controlled. And it is definitely amnesty. But if the bill does not pass, things will get even worse in America."

New York Times Opposes the Immigration Compromise "It is the nation's duty to welcome immigrants, to treat them decently and give them the opportunity to assimilate. But if it does so according to the outlines of the deal being debated this week, the change will come at too high a price: The radical repudiation of generations of immigration policy, the weakening of families and the creation of a system of modern peonage within our borders."

Michael Barone in National Review "In his negotiations with Kennedy, Kyl has secured many provisions that make this bill more stringent than the one that passed the Senate last May by a vote of 62 to 36. That's a significant accomplishment. Changing U.S. public policy is like steering a giant ship — it's impossible to sharply reverse course, but you can change the direction in a way that will make a significant difference over time."

Conservative Talk Radio Show Host Michael Medved "Do we want to encourage illegals to try to rectify their status - to come out of the shadows, play by the rules, pay all taxes due, learn English, and assimilate into our society? Or do we only want them to disappear - nursing the delusional fantasy that some 12 million human beings will somehow uproot themselves (in many cases after years of US residency) and return to their impoverished homelands simply because we want them to do so? And speaking of rewarding good behavior, and punishing the bad: those courageous conservatives (Senators Kyl, Graham, Isakson and, yes, McCain) who have worked constructively and seriously on immigration reform deserve our support, not our rage, while those politicians and media figures who have demagogued this issue in a way that only makes it worse, in no way merit our encouragement."

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May 21 2007

WASHINGTON-  U.S. Senator Lindsey Graham (R-South Carolina) today announced Sumter will receive nearly $1.3 million in housing program grants.

Community Development Block Grant - $389,384

The Community Development Block Grant program develops communities and provides housing by expanding economic opportunities for low and moderate income households.

HOME Investment Partnership - $895,749

The HOME Investment Partnership Program creates affordable housing by allowing communities to design and implement strategies tailored to their own needs and priorities.

American Dream Down Payment Initiative - $13,533

The American Dream Down Payment Initiative promotes homeownership opportunities by providing necessary resources for down payment and closing cost assistance to lower-income and minority households.

The grants were awarded by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development.

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May 21 2007

Graham Announces More Than $15 Million for South Carolina Airports

Passenger Airports serving Charleston, Columbia and Greenville-Spartanburg Receive Nearly $10 Million

WASHINGTON - U.S. Senator Lindsey Graham (R-South Carolina) today announced more than $15 million in federal grants for airports in South Carolina.  Passenger airports serving Charleston, Columbia and Greenville-Spartanburg received nearly two-thirds of the total funding.

“South Carolina’s airports are a vital part of our state’s transportation infrastructure and play an integral role in our economy,” said Graham.  “These improvements will help recruit future investment and economic development.”

Major Awards for South Carolina Include:

Charleston International Airport / Charleston Air Force Base (CHS)
The Charleston County Aviation Authority will receive a $2,203,397 grant for Charleston AFB/International Airport.  The funds will be used to replace the flight information display system and baggage information display system; replace radio equipment; and to extend rain covered walkways to the public parking area.

Columbia Metropolitan Airport (CAE)
The Richland/Lexington Airport Commission will receive a $3,852,199 grant for Columbia Metropolitan Airport.  The funds will be used to purchase and install a new regional jet bridge; purchase a pavement friction tester; rehabilitate taxiway lights; and rehabilitate runway surfaces.

Greenville/Spartanburg International Airport (GSP)
The Greenville-Spartanburg Airport Commission will receive a $3,915,615 grant for Greenville Spartanburg International Airport.  The funds will be used for the rehabilitation of runway and taxiway lights including the installation of an airfield lighting computer system; reconstruction of aprons; renovation of the terminal restrooms; and the installation of public seating in the terminal.

Other award recipients in South Carolina:

Aiken
The City of Aiken will receive a $150,000 grant to install perimeter fencing at Aiken Municipal Airport.

Allendale
Allendale County will receive a $150,000 grant to aid in the construction of a new terminal building at the Allendale County Airport.

Anderson
Anderson County will receive a $150,000 grant to purchase land within the runway protection zone at Anderson Regional Airport.

Beaufort
Beaufort County will receive a $773,222 grant for the Hilton Head Airport.  The funds will be used for land acquisition, the design of a new airport rescue and firefighting vehicle building, updating the airport master plan, and obstruction removal.

Beaufort County will receive a $160,550 grant to remove obstructions and update the master plan at the Beaufort County Airport.

Chesterfield
Cheraw will receive a $345,441 grant for taxiway construction at Cheraw Municipal/Lynch Bellinger Field.

Pageland will receive a $300,000 grant to install perimeter fencing and acquire land for future development at the Pageland Airport.

Dorchester
Dorchester County will receive a $150,000 grant to install a runway vertical/visual guidance system and remove obstructions at the St. George Airport.

Horry
Horry County will receive a $150,000 grant to remove obstructions at the Grand Strand Airport.

Jasper
Jasper County will receive a $280,900 grant to rehabilitate the runway at the Ridgeland Airport.

Laurens
Laurens County will receive a $149,500 grant for the Laurens County Airport.  The funds will be used to construct a fuel farm, design a hangar, and acquire approach easements.

Newberry
Newberry County will receive a $2,150,000 grant to begin site preparation and construction on a new runway at the Newberry County Airport.

Spartanburg
The City of Spartanburg will receive a $131,000 grant to design a new apron and taxiway to serve the new terminal building at the Spartanburg Downtown Memorial Airport.

York
The City of Rock Hill will receive a $150,000 grant for taxiway design and to acquire land at Rock Hill/York County/Bryant Field.

All grants were awarded by the U.S. Department of Transportation.

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May 21 2007

Fred Barnes of the Weekly Standard

“In 2006, with Republicans in control of the Senate, an immigration bill that was anathema to most Republicans passed the Senate by a filibuster-proof margin. Now, oddly enough, with Democrats in charge, the Senate is likely to approve an immigration bill -- call it Kyl-Kennedy -- that from a Republican perspective represents a major improvement over the earlier bill in almost every conceivable way.”

Fox News Channel Bill O’Reilly on the Compromise Legislation
“The bottom line here is that if the bill doesn't pass, another ten million illegal aliens are going to come here in the next five years anyway. So the chaos we have now will double.  The new immigration bill is unfair to those who've obeyed the rules. It is dangerous if not tightly controlled. And it is definitely amnesty. But if the bill does not pass, things will get even worse in America.”

New York Times Opposes the Immigration Compromise
 “It is the nation’s duty to welcome immigrants, to treat them decently and give them the opportunity to assimilate. But if it does so according to the outlines of the deal being debated this week, the change will come at too high a price: The radical repudiation of generations of immigration policy, the weakening of families and the creation of a system of modern peonage within our borders.”

Michael Barone in National Review
“In his negotiations with Kennedy, Kyl has secured many provisions that make this bill more stringent than the one that passed the Senate last May by a vote of 62 to 36. That's a significant accomplishment.  Changing U.S. public policy is like steering a giant ship — it's impossible to sharply reverse course, but you can change the direction in a way that will make a significant difference over time.”

Conservative Talk Radio Show Host Michael Medved
 “Do we want to encourage illegals to try to rectify their status – to come out of the shadows, play by the rules, pay all taxes due, learn English, and assimilate into our society? Or do we only want them to disappear – nursing the delusional fantasy that some 12 million human beings will somehow uproot themselves (in many cases after years of US residency) and return to their impoverished homelands simply because we want them to do so?  And speaking of rewarding good behavior, and punishing the bad: those courageous conservatives (Senators Kyl, Graham, Isakson and, yes, McCain) who have worked constructively and seriously on immigration reform deserve our support, not our rage, while those politicians and media figures who have demagogued this issue in a way that only makes it worse, in no way merit our encouragement.”

 

May 21 2007

WASHINGTON-  U.S. Senator Lindsey Graham (R-South Carolina) today announced South Carolina will receive more than $4.3 million in Infrastructure Protection Program grants.  All of the awards in South Carolina were in the area of port security.

Charleston
The South Carolina State Ports Authority will receive $3,720,464; the City of Charleston will receive $456,000; and the Charleston County Sheriff’s Office will receive $75,000.

Beaufort
The Beaufort County Council Emergency Management Division will receive $55,785.

The grants were awarded by the U.S. Department of Homeland Security.

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May 17 2007

WASHINGTON - U.S. Senator Lindsey Graham (R-South Carolina) today made these statements on comprehensive immigration reform plan.

General Thoughts:

"Over the last few months, I have spoken with President Bush almost every week and met with him twice about immigration reform. Secretary Chertoff and Secretary Gutierrez have been there every step of the way. There would be no bill without their hard work.

"Today we charted a new path for our nation's immigration policies.

"We break the cycle of chain migration by placing a premium on the education and job skills of new immigrants coming to the United States. This new merit-based system is a major change in our nation's immigration policies and allows us to attract the best and brightest in the world.

"We reclaim control of our nation's borders by adding new Border Patrol agents and technology to stop illegal border crossings.

"We establish a new comprehensive employee verification system - for all workers including Americans -- to ensure people are in the country legally and eligible to work.

"We establish a temporary guest worker system to meet our nation's future labor needs. Temporary workers can come here and work for a defined period of time, but they must return to their home country.

"And we establish procedures to deal with the estimated 12 million illegal immigrants, allowing them to stay under our rules - not theirs. They will be placed on probation and pay fines, learn English, and assimilate into American society. If they want to become citizens -- a minimum 13 year process -- they will be forced to leave the United States and return to their country of origin. Only from there will they be allowed to apply for citizenship.

Is the Legislation Amnesty?

"Amnesty is a pardon and means all is forgiven. This legislation is not amnesty. President Bush made clear today he does not view it as amnesty and I agree with him.

"I hope all Senators, particularly those who were not part of the negotiations, will become more informed about the details of the bill before making incorrect statements.

"Here are the facts. Illegal aliens will have the opportunity to come forward and be fined, punished and placed on years of probation. Illegal aliens will not be allowed to jump in line for citizenship ahead of those currently waiting. If they want to become citizens they must pay fines, learn English, pass a civics exam, undergo background checks and leave the United States and return to their country of origin. The punishment is fair and just.

"The public expects Members of Congress to speak their minds, but be informed in their opinions. I would ask for everyone to take time to understand how the bill works."

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May 16 2007

WASHINGTON- U.S. Senator Lindsey Graham (R-South Carolina) today announced the Senate has authorized more than $40 million in public works projects in South Carolina.  Graham secured the approval in the Water Resources Development Act of 2007.  The legislation was approved by the Senate 91-4.

“South Carolina’s natural beauty is one of our greatest resources,” said Graham.  “These infrastructure projects will help protect and maintain the environment, while improving our quality of life.  I am proud to help assist in these projects and know how they can benefit the local communities.  I appreciate the leadership of my colleagues Congressmen Henry Brown and Gresham Barrett in the House of Representatives, and I look forward to continuing to work with them on these projects.”

South Carolina projects in the bill include:

Abbeville County/Lake Russell

  • The legislation instructs the federal government to sell approximately 600 acres of land around Lake Russell to the state of South Carolina.  The land will be combined with other state held lands and developed to include hotel, conference center, marina and housing.  The development will create jobs and spur growth in an economically-depressed area.

Charleston County

  • $6 million for the Charleston Water System to replace approximately eight miles of deep sewer tunnel in peninsular Charleston and West Ashley. 
  • $3 million for the City of Charleston for stormwater control measures and storm sewer improvements at the Spring Street/Fishburne Street Drainage Basin.

Georgetown County

  • $16.44 million to Pawleys Island for a shore protection project that reduces hurricane and storm damage.  $5.48 million will be used for initial costs and $10.6 million will be used for periodic renourishment over the fifty-year life of the project.

Horry County

  • $10 million for the City of Myrtle Beach and the Myrtle Beach Downtown Redevelopment Corporation to implement a regional stormwater management system.  The project will create an underground collection system that will retain, clean, and then discharge stormwater via underground offshore outfalls.
  • $3 million for North Myrtle Beach to implement stormwater management and water quality measures installing ocean outfall pipes.
  • $3 million for Surfside to implement stormwater management and water quality measures by installing ocean outfall pipes.

Jasper County

  • The legislation instructs the Army Corps of Engineers to conduct a study to assess the feasibility of establishing a port and container facility in Jasper County.

The legislation must now be approved by a joint House-Senate conference committee before it can be signed into law by President Bush.  Graham will also continue to encourage the Senate to appropriate federal funding to these projects.

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May 15 2007

WASHINGTON -- U.S. Senators Lindsey Graham and Jim DeMint joined South Carolina Governor Mark Sanford in urging the U.S. Department of Agriculture to provide a Secretarial disaster declaration to cover agriculture losses suffered in the early April freeze. 

A Secretarial disaster declaration would allow eligible producers to qualify for low-interest emergency loans and other disaster assistance to help recover from these losses.

“It is imperative that we afford relief to our farming community as they suffer the effects of devastating freezing temperatures in early April,” the Senators said in the letter to Secretary of Agriculture Mike Johanns.

The freezing temperatures April 7 through April 10 severely damaged or destroyed the majority of the state’s fruit, row and nursery crops in the middle of the 2007 spring planting season.  Farm Service Agency Damage Assessment Reports indicate that the freezing temperatures destroyed over 90 percent of the peach crop.

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May 09 2007

WASHINGTON – U.S. Senator Lindsey Graham (R-South Carolina) led U.S. Senators and members of the U.S. House of Representatives in accepting a petition – the Appeal for Courage -- signed by more than 2,800 U.S. service members urging Congress to support the mission in Iraq and end calls for retreat.  A full 60 percent of the petition signers have previously served or are now serving in Iraq.

“The men and women who are doing the fighting and dying -- the ultimate stakeholders -- want to send a different message than Congress is sending,” said Graham.  “They want people to know they are committed to Victory in Iraq and they don’t want Congress to undercut them.  They know victory is possible.  I hear them and I wish others would too.”

The Appeal for Courage petition was started in February by two U.S. service members serving in Iraq: Lieutenant Jason Nichols, a Navy Information Professional officer and Staff Sergeant David Thul, of the Minnesota National Guard.  It states:

“As an American currently serving my nation in uniform, I respectfully urge my political leaders in Congress to fully support our mission in Iraq and halt any calls for retreat.  I also respectfully urge my political leaders to actively oppose media efforts which embolden my enemy while demoralizing American support at home. The War in Iraq is a necessary and just effort to bring freedom to the Middle East and protect America from further attack.”

The petition was presented by Bob Wallace, Executive Director of the Veterans of Foreign Wars (VFW), on behalf of the petitioner’s organizers.  The elected officials at the event included Senators Jim DeMint (R-South Carolina), Saxby Chambliss (R-Georgia), Jon Kyl (R-Arizona), House Republican Leader John Boehner (R-Ohio), Congressman Eric Cantor (R-Virginia), and Congressman Adam Putnam (R-Florida).

In a statement this morning LT Nichols and SSG Thul said:

"This Appeal is a direct communication to Congress from the currently serving military troops. We are respectfully asking for full support in finishing the mission you assigned us here in Iraq.  Patience and resolve will result in a stable democratic country in the Middle East.  Early withdrawal will result in a stronger enemy, a weaker America, and a demoralized US Armed forces.  Building a new democracy takes time, and we are making steady progress. We need your support to finish the job."

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NOTE: For more information please visit www.appealforcourage.org.