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Report to Congress: Assessment of the U.S. Government Haiti Rebuilding and Development Strategy


Report
Office of the Haiti Special Coordinator
January 23, 2013

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The Senate report accompanying the Supplemental Appropriations Act, 2010 (P.L. 111-212) (S. Rept. 111-188, pgs. 62-63), requests that the Secretary of State submit a report to the Committee on Appropriations not later than 90 days after the enactment of the act, and every 180 days thereafter until September 30, 2012. The report is to include any significant modifications of the Haiti Rebuilding and Development Strategy during the preceding 180 days, and an explanation of such changes; a description, by goal and objective, of the implementation of the Strategy; an assessment of progress, or lack thereof, during the preceding 180 days toward meeting the goals and objectives, benchmarks, and timeframes specified in the Strategy, including an assessment of the performance of the Government of Haiti; a description of U.S. government programs contributing to the achievement of the goals and objectives including the amounts obligated and expended on such programs during the preceding six months; and an assessment of efforts to coordinate U.S. government programs with assistance provided by other donors and implementing partners, including significant gaps in donor assistance.

The post-earthquake U.S. government Haiti Strategy sets forth goals for the United States to pursue in helping Haiti rebuild better after the January 2010 earthquake. The Strategy focuses on three geographic areas (in the north, central coast, and Port-au-Prince regions) and targets assistance to infrastructure and energy, food and economic security, health and other basic services, and governance and rule of law.

In Haiti, there are currently three functioning branches of government. In addition to Parliament, the installation of Prime Minister Lamothe in May 2012 followed by the July formation of a Superior Judicial Council (CSPJ) responsible for the oversight and management of the nation’s judicial system completes the GOH’s constitutionally mandated branches of government.

Pillar A: Infrastructure and Energy:

The U.S. government’s efforts to help replace housing stock lost and to resettle households that were either directly or indirectly affected are well underway Currently, the U.S. government has over 900 seismic and hurricane resistant houses under construction in Caracol, Northern Haiti and in Cabaret north of Port-au-Prince and to date, 227 Haitian beneficiaries have been selected to receive housing. The U.S. government has recently signed a Memorandum of Understanding with the Government of Qatar to collaborate on the construction of approximately 160 additional houses. Furthermore, an agreement has been reached with local lenders to increase the supply of microfinance resources in the housing sector by approximately $7.5 million. The U.S. government completed its promised rehabilitation of the neighborhood of Ravine Pintade in Port-au-Prince. In addition, the neighborhood enumeration project mapped 10,695 plots/buildings and documented land ownership and tenancy for over 13,000 households in two neighborhoods in Port-au-Prince. The enumeration project developed an effective methodology for clarifying land tenure challenges to reconstruction and is serving as a foundation for other reconstruction projects.

In June 2012, the U.S. government completed a 10-megawatt power plant in the Caracol Industrial Park (CIP) that will supply electricity to the CIP and communities in the surrounding areas. As demand increases the power plant can be expanded up to 25 megawatts. The repair, rehabilitation, and upgrade of the five electrical substations in Port-au-Prince are scheduled to be completed in February 2013.

The Improved Cooking Technology Program is making progress, testing Liquid Petroleum Gas (LPG) and charcoal stoves and certifying manufacturers with the goal of developing viable for-profit businesses that produce and distribute cleaner technologies. As of August, 250 LPG commercial stoves were sold to large charcoal users (street food vendors and schools) in Port-au-Prince. Several microfinance institutions have agreed to develop products that will provide credit for street vendors and small businesses that wish to switch to an LPG stove.

Pillar B: Food and Economic Security:

The Government of Haiti is increasing its efforts to attract foreign direct investment and local investment. To advance this effort, agreement was reached to strategically place three U.S. Department of Treasury Office of Technical Assistance (OTA) advisers within key ministries of the Government of Haiti; the first has been placed with the Ministry of Planning. Other OTA Treasury advisors are helping the Government of Haiti reach its goals in the areas of budget, debt, banking and insurance regulation, and tax administration. Advisors have: drafted a revision of the outdated fiscal code pertaining to non-governmental organizations, at the behest of the tax administration; started to clearly define and institutionalize roles, responsibilities and processes within the Ministry of Planning and External Cooperation and budget institutions for the planning, monitoring and evaluation of investment projects; and continued to assist the Ministry of Economy and Finance (MEF) in drafting interim regulations to allow MEF to oversee the insurance industry pending adoption of the new law.

In May 2012, the U.S. launched a business plan competition in support of Haitian small- and medium-size enterprises to help stimulate economic growth. The competition attracted 129 businesses, four of whom won matching grants. The U.S. government is preparing to launch a new five-year project to encourage the development of value chains that support foreign direct investment and U.S. government investments, including employment and training in the construction, textiles, apparel, and agribusiness sectors. In July 2012, the Mobile Money Initiative network reached the five million transaction milestone. The program offered incentive funds, a total of $10 million, to entities that offer mobile money services in Haiti. Next steps are to increase the number of active users and vendors who accept mobile payments. In order to improve access to finance, the United States is providing credit guarantees to selected Haitian financial institutions to help design new innovative financial loan packages for Haitian micro, small, and medium enterprises and farmers, and establish sound financial data processing systems for loan officers, in order to support $21.7 million in loans already disbursed to 6,559 businesses. These loans will create opportunities for farmers, provide expansion of local businesses and support sustainable growth.

In the agricultural sector, the rehabilitation of rivers around Port-au-Prince and the planting of fruit bearing trees on hillsides through Feed the Future West helped minimize the impact of Tropical Storm Isaac on crops and homes. Currently, work has begun to rehabilitate damaged irrigation systems. U.S. government-supported agricultural supply stores provide equipment to farmers who lost their crops. The Feed the Future program provides a full value chain approach to improving food security through focusing on three domestic focus crops per corridor and two export crops, mango and cacao. In the Port-au-Prince and Saint Marc corridors, the program has increased rice yields by 118 percent, corn yields by 368 percent, bean yields by 85 percent; and plantain yields by 21 percent. Planning for the farm-to-market roads is underway in all three corridors. Local government and community participation will help ensure that the roads will link with other investments, such as health clinics, and that the communities are committed to maintaining the roads. Meanwhile, the agricultural best practices training center was inaugurated in Duvier on June 8. As part of the inauguration, the center's first 74 master farmers received certification from the Haitian Ministry of Agriculture. In the area of nutrition, the U.S. Department of Agriculture supported the Government of Haiti to publish its first Food Basket Bulletin, reflecting the government’s new ability to project impacts of price fluctuations on food security.

Pillar C: Health and Other Basic Services:

The U.S. government continues to improve service delivery through increased access to and availability of health services. The Government of Haiti, with U.S. government assistance, has continued to get more HIV positive patients on anti-retroviral (ARV) treatment, reaching its target of 65% of eligible HIV patients on ARV treatment, and to increase the number of people tested, reduce the number of babies born with HIV and increase the number of people receiving palliative care. Mass drug administration to prevent lymphatic filariasis continues, and U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) projects have achieved increases in access to family planning (including social marketing), prenatal and postnatal care visits, and births attended by skilled birth attendants.

The U.S. government and the Government of Haiti signed a Health Partnership Framework in June 2012 outlining both governments' commitments to health 2012-2017. The intention is to shift the model of support from direct service delivery to technical assistance. The U.S. government will provide technical assistance to the Ministry of Health (MOH) on politically sensitive issues like reforming management and governance, to include helping the MOH manage human resources, finances, health information systems, and the supply chain for commodities. Reconstruction of earthquake damaged health infrastructure is underway. At the State University Hospital in Port-au-Prince the most damaged buildings have been demolished, and the renovation of the emergency room has been fast-tracked to ensure that Port-au-Prince's poorest inhabitants have somewhere to go in an emergency.

The U.S. government recently convened the two largest umbrella networks of organizations for disabled people to coordinate a single national strategy and move forward with plans to strengthen local advocacy groups through the award of ten $50,000 grants. In addition, work is underway to establish four to six disability service centers nationwide and to build government capacity to promote inclusion of people with disabilities in policy and legislation.

Pillar D: Governance, Rule of Law and Security:

This pillar encompasses judicial and legal assistance, government capacity building, strengthening the Haitian National Police, and protecting vulnerable people.

Judicial and Legal Assistance: The establishment of the Superior Judicial Council (CSPJ) is a major step toward judicial independence. The U.S. government will help build the institutional and technical capacities of the CSPJ to effectively administer the judicial branch. Another key advance was the submission of revised Penal and Criminal Procedure Codes, developed with U.S. government support, to the Ministry of Justice in September. In parallel, another program continued its focus on providing legal aid services to underserved communities and detainees in targeted jurisdictions, and consulted with the Government of Haiti on priority short-term actions to reduce the rate of pretrial detention in Haiti’s prisons.

Government Capacity Building: U.S. government-supported capacity-building efforts continue for both the executive and legislative branches. The U.S. government has continued to support revenue mobilization and improvements in financial management in St. Marc, Cabaret, and Carrefour municipalities. In Carrefour alone, locally generated revenues increased 475 percent in the first half of 2012 as compared to the previous year. Technical assistance was provided to the Budget and Finance Committees to better analyze the Government of Haiti’s 2012 budget and training and computer equipment for parliamentary staff was provided.

The Government of Haiti led its first-ever preventive evacuation before the arrival of Tropical Storm Isaac, saving an untold number of lives. This accomplishment was partially the result of extensive U.S. funded training simulation exercises on developing procedures for managing evacuations and evacuation shelters.

In the past year, the U.S. Treasury Office of Technical Assistance (OTA) has worked with the Central Bank and banking sector to develop an effective anti-money laundering compliance regime; assisted the Financial Intelligence Unit to adopt an effective information technology system; and trained and mentored various Government of Haiti agencies combating illicit finance on money laundering and related financial crimes, and on investigations and prosecutions. In August, OTA engagement helped the Government of Haiti conduct its first money laundering trial and charged an additional money laundering case, helped the Central Bank to issue new anti-money laundering (AML) and counter-terrorist financing (CFT) directives for commercial banks, and assisted with the coordination of the development and procurement of a customized information technology system for the Financial Intelligence Unit in addition to conducting training for analysts and developing information technology staff positions and position descriptions. While OTA has enjoyed significant successes, efforts to develop a fully effective AML/CFT program have been stymied by a largely non-functional judicial system, antiquated criminal codes, frequent changes in counterparts and Ministerial personnel, and threats to the physical security of counterparts.

The Haitian National Police: The U.S. government is helping the Government of Haiti meet the 2016 goal of 15,000 Haitian National Police (HNP) Officers by improving infrastructure at the HNP Academy. U.S. government funding continues to support new HNP cadets entering the Academy, assisting in procuring uniforms, food, equipment, and supplies for the students. Six New York Police Department officers, deployed on 90-day rotations, provide training to HNP officers, including on kidnapping investigations. U.S. government assistance is also directed to strengthening the HNP’s counternarcotics unit through training and provision of vehicles and canines. Plans to construct two new prisons, including one new women’s prison, as well as additional refurbishments have advanced, and training and equipment are contributing to the development of the Department of Corrections.

Protecting Vulnerable People: Activities continue in technical assistance on anti-Trafficking in Persons (TIP) legislation; prevention and protection programs for victims of TIP; and enhancing capacity of criminal justice practitioners to combat trafficking. U.S. government funding supported an analysis of Haiti’s draft anti-trafficking legislation by legal specialists to identify gaps and areas in need of strengthening. Among the gaps identified in the draft legislation was the omission of language explicitly addressing the practice of children in involuntary domestic servitude. U.S. government implementing partners in coordination with local NGOs are actively engaging community leaders to raise awareness about TIP and to reverse the flow of children from source communities into domestic servitude or slavery. Additionally, they are providing direct assistance to child victims of trafficking to include family tracing, reunification and reintegration; to date, more than 460 victims have been assisted.

The International Association for Women Judges has developed a training program using the format of training of trainers to strengthen the judicial capacity to address trafficking. Two trafficking cases were presented to State authorities in the Northeast Department. The fact that cases are being presented to the courts is a significant achievement. However, the lack of stringent penalties and comprehensive anti-trafficking legislation is impeding prosecution efforts.

 Haiti – Funding Update as of September 30, 2012
 

 

Obligated and expended funds as of September 30, 2012

$ in thousands

FY 2010
Actual Base
Commit-
ments

FY 2010
Actual Base
Obligations

FY 2010
Actual Base
Expenditures

FY 2010 Actual Supp
Commit-
ments

FY 2010 Actual Supp
Obligations

FY 2010 Actual Supp
Expenditures

FY 2011
Actual
Commit-
ments

FY 2011
Actual
Obligations

FY 2011
Actual
Expenditures

FY 2012
653 (a)
Commit-
ments

FY 2012
653 (a)
Obligations

FY 2012
653 (a)
Expenditures

HAITI

543,674

510,592

455,793

1,136,598

755,999

510,487

372,229

264,344

145,538

294,345

103,464

60,775

DoS & USAID

543,674

510,592

455,793

916,808

536,863

295,408

372,229

264,344

145,538

260,909

70,028

27,339

Treasury

--

--

--

7,790

7,136

3,079

--

--

--

--

--

--

Debt Relief &
Reconst.

--

--

--

212,000

212,000

212,000

--

--

--

33,436

33,436

33,436



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