Oct 06 2005

WASHINGTON – U.S. Senator Lindsey Graham (R-South Carolina)’s amendment to the defense spending bill passed the Senate late last night. The amendment passed by unanimous consent. “The United States desperately needs effective detention and interrogation policies,” said Graham, a member of the Senate Armed Services Committee. “We need good intelligence and we need to keep terrorists off the battlefield. I’m confident we can do this while living up to the high standards we have always adhered to as a nation.” The major provisions of the Graham amendment include: The President would be required to submit to Congress the procedures for the Combatant Status Review Tribunal (CSRT) and the Annual Review Board (ARB) at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba (Gitmo). The CSRT is the tribunal that determines whether a detainee is an unlawful enemy combatant. The ARB reviews the combatant’s status on an annual basis to determine if the individual is an enemy combatant, still holds intelligence value and/or, still presents a threat to the United States. The amendment requires the president to make two changes to current procedures. First, the Designated Civilian Official responsible for overseeing detainees in U.S. custody would require Senate confirmation. Second, the CSRT and ARB may not consider statements obtained with undue coercion when determining the status of a detainee. The president is also given flexibility to update CSRT and ARB procedures by giving Congress 30 days notice. “We must have procedures in place at Gitmo that will keep terrorists off the battlefield as long as necessary to protect our nation,” said Graham. “Without congressional authority we run a real risk a federal court will either take over or impede our efforts at Gitmo. We are winning in some courts and losing in others. I firmly believe the Executive branch will fair better in court now that Congress has given guidance regarding the operations at Gitmo.” “My amendment reforms and legitimizes the current system in use at Gitmo,” said Graham. “It bolsters the case in federal court that enemy combatant status is a proper and legal term. It also strengthens the legal case that conferring enemy combatant status on terrorists is a recognized legal concept.” Graham’s amendment, along with one introduced by U.S. Senator John McCain (R-Arizona), were both approved last night by the Senate. The McCain amendment, which passed 90-9, requires interrogation procedures to be followed as outlined in the Army Field Manual and prohibits the use of cruel, inhuman, or degrading treatment or punishment of anyone in military custody. “We’re trying to create certainty from chaos,” said Graham. “The amendments give guidance to our troops to ensure they don’t get into legal trouble while detaining and interrogating terrorists. The McCain amendment will be invaluable in assisting our own troops in understanding the policies of interrogation. I firmly believe the confusion created in the past will be resolved by using the Army Field Manual as the standardized method of interrogating enemy combatants.” “Our troops will have guidance as to what the rules are and hopefully it will provide them protection when carrying out their duties when interrogating enemy combatants,” said Graham. “We don’t want our troops to run afoul of the law inadvertently.” #####

Oct 05 2005

WASHINGTON- U.S. Senator Lindsey Graham (R-South Carolina) today announced Talatha Rural Community Water District and the City of New Ellenton will receive a $1,517,511 grant for water and sewer infrastructure improvements. The funds will be used to construct a new well, a 600,000-gallon elevated water tank, 4,000 linear feet of 12-inch water line, and 8,000 linear feet of gravity sewer line. The improvements will serve a manufacturing facility. “Adequate infrastructure is a major factor in future economic development,” said Graham. “This is an investment in the community and will have an impact for years to come.” The grant was awarded by the U.S. Department of Commerce. ####

Oct 05 2005

WASHINGTON -- U.S. Senators Lindsey Graham and Jim DeMint today announced more than $325,000 in grants to fire departments across South Carolina. “Firefighters and emergency service personnel dedicate themselves to protecting the health and safety of South Carolinians,” said Graham. “These grants help fire departments save lives by providing the means to obtain the best equipment and training available.” The Operations and Firefighter Safety Program grant may be used for training, wellness, and fitness programs; the purchase of firefighting equipment and personal protective equipment; and modifications to fire stations and facilities. The grants awarded include: Latta Dillon County Fire Department Area 2 will receive $74,052. Liberty Walker McEmoyle Fire Department will receive $94,150. North Charleston City of North Charleston Fire Department will receive $67,528. Spartanburg City of Spartanburg Public Safety Department will receive $90,666. The Assistance to Firefighters grant program awards one-year grants directly to local fire departments, enhancing their ability to respond to fire and fire-related hazards in the community. The program supports departments by providing them the tools and resources necessary to protect the health and safety of the public and their firefighting personnel. Grantees share in the cost of the funded project at a percentage based on the population of their respective jurisdiction. Grantees that serve jurisdictions of 50,000 or fewer residents are required to provide a non-Federal cost-share of 10 percent while grantees that serve jurisdictions of over 50,000 provide a 30 percent cost-share. The match must be in cash without the use of in-kind contributions. In addition, the maximum amount of federal funds that an applicant can be awarded is $750,000 during any fiscal year. The grants are made by the U.S. Department of Homeland Security. ####

Oct 03 2005

WASHINGTON- U.S. Senator Lindsey Graham (R-South Carolina) today announced the Medical University of South Carolina (MUSC) will receive $9,820,650 for construction of the Hollings Cancer Center. “Cancer is the second leading cause of death in South Carolina, and MUSC is on the cutting edge of cancer prevention, detection, and treatment,” said Graham. “This facility will allow MUSC to better serve our state and help many of our citizens battling cancer.” The funding was included in the Fiscal Year 2005 Omnibus Appropriations Bill. Graham noted that earlier this year he secured $8 million for the Hollings Cancer Center in the Fiscal Year 2006 Commerce, Justice, and Science Appropriations Bill. That bill has been approved by the Senate and must now be approved by a joint House/Senate conference committee. ####

Oct 03 2005

WASHINGTON- U.S. Senator Lindsey Graham (R-South Carolina) today announced four school districts in South Carolina will receive more than $625,000 in grant money to help develop emergency response plans in schools. The funds will be used to improve and strengthen school emergency response and crisis management plans. Recipients must address all four phases of crisis response planning: prevention/mitigation, preparedness, response, and recovery. In addition, grant recipients must provide training to school personnel and students, coordinate with local law enforcement, have a plan for communicating policies and procedures to parents, and take into consideration the needs of disabled students. Grant recipients include:
  • Fairfield County School District- $100,000
  • Georgetown County School District- $245,449
  • Lexington and Richland Counties School District Five- $147,927
  • Rock Hill School District Three- $132,371
  • The grants were awarded by the U.S. Department of Education. ####

Oct 03 2005

WASHINGTON- U.S. Senator Lindsey Graham (R-South Carolina) today announced Clemson University will receive a $799,938 grant to provide support and funding to local faith-based and community organizations. As a recipient of a Compassion Capital Fund Demonstration Program grant, Clemson will serve as a bridge between the federal government and faith-based and community organizations. The University will provide training and technical assistance as well as small financial awards ranging anywhere from $5,000 to $40,000. Clemson is one of 45 intermediary organizations nationwide. The grant was awarded by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. ####

Oct 03 2005

WASHINGTON- U.S. Senator Lindsey Graham (R-South Carolina) today announced more than $650,000 in grants for two organizations in South Carolina to assist victims of domestic violence and sexual assault. “Domestic violence remains a major problem in South Carolina,” said Graham. “We have a responsibility to do all we can to assist victims and prosecute offenders.” The National College of District Attorneys in Columbia will receive a $400,000 grant. The funds will be used to sponsor the Fifteenth Annual National Conference on Domestic Violence. The conference is expected to be attended by approximately 1,000 attendees and will focus on providing the tools necessary to help victims rebuild their lives. The South Carolina Centers for Equal Justice in Columbia will receive a $252,590 grant. The funds will be used to provide on-site advocacy, improved legal services, and specialized training for attorneys in the areas of domestic violence and sexual assault. This project is a collaboration between South Carolina Centers for Equal Justice and other victim services organizations including the Pee Dee Coalition Against Domestic and Sexual Assault, Cumbee Center to Assist Abused Persons, Laurens County Safe Home, Safe Passage, SAFE Homes-Rape Crisis Coalition, and My Sister’s House. The grants were awarded by the U.S. Department of Justice. ####

Oct 03 2005

WASHINGTON- U.S. Senator Lindsey Graham (R-South Carolina) today announced two South Carolina organizations will receive more than $460,000 in grants to support employment programs for persons with disabilities. The South Carolina Vocational Rehabilitation Department will receive $252,924 to recruit, train, and maintain twenty “Disability Specialists” who can serve as coaches and mentors for rehabilitation staff throughout the state. These specialists will have the skills necessary to better serve those with the most significant disabilities, including spinal cord injury, brain injury, deafness, and mental illness. The Disability Action Center, Inc. (DAC) in Columbia will receive $207,109 to help increase opportunities for people with disabilities to enter competitive employment in the residential construction industry. DAC with partner with the National Association of Homebuilders and the Home Builders Institute for this project. Both grants were awarded by the U.S. Department of Education. ####

Oct 03 2005

WASHINGTON- U.S. Senator Lindsey Graham (R-South Carolina) today announced the University of South Carolina (USC) will receive more than $2.2 million dollars in grants to support health care and medical research programs. Grants awarded include:
  • $1,585,298 to support efforts to eliminate disparities in health care.
  • $329,871 for drug abuse research.
  • $295,387 for genomics and biomedical research.
All grants were awarded by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. ####

Oct 03 2005

WASHINGTON – U.S. Senator Lindsey Graham (R-South Carolina) today made the following statement on President Bush’s selection of Harriet Miers to serve as a justice on the Supreme Court of the United States. Graham is a member of the Senate Judiciary Committee. “President Bush has made a solid pick for the Supreme Court. “Harriet Miers has been in the legal trenches throughout her career and has a tremendous understanding of how the law works in people’s everyday lives. Her legal experience combined with her life experience makes her a solid choice. “I hope for and anticipate a smooth confirmation process with a significant bipartisan vote in support. In my opinion, there will be no filibuster as she is a mainstream conservative who will be a strict constructionist on the Supreme Court. “I expect the liberal left to make demands upon the Administration to produce information protected by attorney-client privilege. Efforts such as these to derail a qualified nominee like Miers should fail.” ####