SOURCE: Judicial Watch

June 06, 2007 12:20 ET

New "Security & Prosperity Partnership" Records Reveal Proposal for U.S.-Canadian Funded Grants for Mexico

Financial Work Plan, Agenda and Meeting Notes on Pandemic Influenza & Health Threats Made Public

WASHINGTON, DC--(Marketwire - June 6, 2007) - Judicial Watch, the public interest group that investigates and prosecutes government corruption, today released documents obtained from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services under the provisions of the Freedom of Information Act, concerning the agency's involvement with the Security and Prosperity Partnership of North America.

A 10-page partnership "Work Plan for the Financial Services Working Group" is included (somewhat incongruously) among the Health and Human Service records. The "work plan" details 24 specific "deliverables" by officials from the U.S. Treasury, Finance Canada, BANXICO, the Federal Reserve Board - Atlanta, and regulatory agencies from all three countries. The deliverables include "cross-border" cooperation in the areas of car insurance, Social Security totalization for Mexico, banking, and Federal Reserve's "Directo a Mexico" remittance program.

Among the specific deliverables outlined in the "work plan" is a taxpayer-supported program to improve Mexico's infrastructure: "Improve North America's competitiveness by enhancing Mexico's competitive position through the establishment of a grant fund for development with U.S. and Canadian resources to finance the development of physical infrastructure in Mexico." The objective has a timeline for completion of 6-18 months.

"If U.S. tax dollars are going to be used to fund Mexico's economic development, the American people ought to know about it," said Judicial Watch President Tom Fitton. "Judicial Watch remains committed to ensuring that this process is open and transparent."

The records also include planning documents and notes summarizing a SPP "technical meeting" held in Ottawa from January 31 - February 1, 2006 and titled, "Enhancing Preparedness Plans and Mutual Assistance for Pandemic Influenza and Other Emerging Public Health Threats in North America." The meeting did not include representatives from Mexico -- a fact the summary notes acknowledge and suggest will "require contacts at the national level first."

The documents also identify HHS personnel assigned to various SPP working groups. The designated working groups include: communications, legal, foreign nationals, epidemiology, and travel and border issues. (These documents are of particular interest given the recent scandal of the tuberculosis-infected American who recently traveled over the U.S.-Canadian border unimpeded by border authorities.)

To read the Security and Prosperity Partnership documents, please visit www.judicialwatch.org.

Contact Information

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    Jill Farrell
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