Wednesday, March 10, 2010

Dan Coats and Bill Bennett: "Project for American Renewal"

In 1995, Senator Dan Coats introduced a package of legislative proposals to help empower local, community-based institutions that were addressing social problems. Crafted with the help of Bill Bennett, a co-director of Empower America, the "Project for American Renewal," comprised 19 separate bills designed to use public policy - and public resources - to energize mainly private efforts to meet human needs. They included:

  • The Mentor Schools Act, to provide grants of $1 million to school districts to develop “same gender” schools.
  • The Role Model Academy Act, to establish an innovative residential academy for at-risk youth.
  • The Kinship Care Act, to create a $30 million demonstration program for states to use adult relatives as the preferred placement option for children separated from their parents.
  • The Restitution and Responsibility Act, to provide grants to states for programs to make restitution to victims of crime.
  • The Assets for Independence Act, to create a four-year, $100 million demonstration program to establish 50,000 Individual Development Accounts, to be used for the purchase of home, college education or small business.
  • The Community Partnership Act, to institute demonstration grants for programs to match communities of faith with welfare recipients and nonviolent criminal offenders.
This is certainly a far cry from the types of legislation being introduced in Washington, D.C. today under Pelosi, Reid and Obama! America needs Dan Coats!

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