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pakistan

July 7, 2011 - 10:17pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in batavia, NY-26, kathy hochul, pakistan, foreign affairs.

When Kathy Hochul made a campaign appearance in Batavia at the YWCA, I asked her about Genesee County's deteriorating infrastructure and what could be done about it at a federal level.

Hochul started by expressing concern about a problem that she sees across Western New York, with pot-holed roads and rusting bridges. As she spoke, it was almost as if the thought occurred to her on the fly -- why are we spending billions building roads in Pakistan when we have so needs here at home.

She picked up the theme in subsequent debates and appearances.

Today, Hochul's congressional office announced that she's kept her campaign promise, voting to reduce aid to Pakistan.

Press release:

WASHINGTON, DC – Today, Congresswoman Kathy Hochul voted in favor of Republican Congressman Ted Poe’s (TX-2) amendment to the Department of Defense Appropriations Act, which would cut funding to Pakistan by $1 billion. 

“Today’s votes were about priorities,” said Congresswoman Hochul.  “Would we rather spend a billion dollars in Pakistan or spend that money right here at home? I know the people of the 26th District would much rather have that money invested in infrastructure, education, and job creation right here in the United States, rather than in the country that hid Osama bin Laden.”

Since being sworn in last month, one of Congresswoman Hochul’s top priorities has been cutting spending and reducing our deficit. In addition to cutting funding to Pakistan, Congresswoman Hochul today voted to cut $675 million from infrastructure in Afghanistan, citing the need to improve infrastructure in our own communities.

March 30, 2011 - 4:06pm

Students at Le Roy's Wolcott St. School spent the last two weeks raising money for those less fortunate. They did this as part of the Pennies for Peace campaign, a program of the Central Asia Institute.

It is designed to raise funds for community-based education and literacy programs -- esepcially for girls -- in remote, Central Asian mountain communities.

The grand total raised by Wolcott St. School -- calculated with the help of the Bank of Castile -- was $1,600. Here is a grade-by-grade count:

Pre K -- $52
K -- $149
Grade 1 -- $183
Grade 2 -- $210
Grade 3 -- $157
Grade 4 -- $325
Grade 5 -- $275
Grade 6 -- $241

 

Kids collected and brought in pennies over a two-week period. Pictured above are the graphed results as of Friday morning (each jar represents $10 in pennies).

What is particularly impressive about this is that the students were not rewarded for the number of pennies they brought in. From the very beginning, there was an understanding that the class that collected the most pennies would not get a pizza party or anything like that.

"What we're looking to do is help the students become intrinsically motivated," said Principal Casey Kosiorek.

He said the overall goal as it pertained to the kids was to help them grow into good citizens who will want to do the right thing without being rewarded.

"I never expected it to have such an impact," said Carol Messura, assistant principal and chair of the project. She said that the students were "extremely enthusiastic" about the whole deal.

"If you were here earlier this morning, you could hear little hoots and hollers with the sound of change being poured into the buckets (pictured at the top)."

Kosiorek said that the money will go toward supplies, teachers' salaries and the building of schools in remote regions of Pakistan and Afghanistan.

"They have pretty much nothing," he commented.

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