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Congressman Trey Gowdy

Representing the 4th District of South Carolina

Gowdy: Response Inadequate on Spartanburg Refugee Questions

May 1, 2015
Press Release

Spartanburg, SC—Congressman Trey Gowdy (R-SC) today released this statement regarding the response from the State Department to his letter of April 13 on plans for a refugee resettlement in Spartanburg:

“We wrote our initial letter to the State Department because we could not answer questions brought to us by constituents regarding plans for a refugee resettlement in Spartanburg. We have provided State's response so the public can read it. But some of the answers are inadequate and fail to provide specificity on who was consulted at the city and county level, within the public school system, and law enforcement, and if they provided input.

“Additionally, to correct the record, the State Department’s characterization that our office was ‘critical in the process’ of establishing the refugee resettlement is patently false. Our office sent one staff member to one meeting almost one year ago, as State’s own answers to our questions indicate. We were provided no follow up information on the proposal or implementation of the plan, nor did we at any point provide approval of the plan. The South Carolina Department of Social Services, not a Member of Congress, is responsible for approving proposals of this type.

“Finally, government transparency and accountability to the public is paramount. While our office does not have a role under the law in the implementation of such a plan, we are interested in providing the community with answers. To that end, we will be following up with the State Department with additional questions regarding local input."

LINK: State Department response to Rep. Gowdy.