Hispanic Professionals Urge State Department, Secretary Clinton,to Issue Pipeline Permit Now, without Further Delay

$7 Billion Project Will Provide Significant Opportunities for Hispanics and U.S.;
Has Shovel-Ready Jobs without a Cent of Taxpayer Money

March 8, 2011 (Houston, Texas) – The National Hispanic Professionals Organization (NHPO) today announced its support for the Keystone XL Pipeline and urged U.S. Secretary of State Hilary Rodham Clinton to issue the project’s Presidential Permit “without any further delay.”

NHPO took the action primarily because of the boost the project will give the U.S. economy and Hispanic businesses and workers at a critical time, but also because of the project’s importance for U.S. energy security.

“Hispanic business is the fastest-growing business segment in the U.S.,” said Saul Valentin, NHPO National Chairman. “A rising tide lifts all boats and the Keystone XL pipeline, a $7 billion construction project, is definitely an economic tide-riser.”

“The Obama administration has put a priority on helping small business, which is the key to job creation and economic recovery. The jobs it stimulates, more than 100,000 of them according to one study, will take a bit out of unemployment. Hispanic small businesses will benefit along with others. We need this project, and we need it now,” Valentin said.

Longer term, the U.S. and Canadian crude oil Keystone XL delivers to U.S. refineries will fuel the U.S. economy for decades, stimulating thousands of permanent jobs, NHPO said.

“Hispanic families, workers and businesses will benefit, along with the rest of the economy,” Valentin said.

“Anyone watching the news also knows it’s important to free ourselves more from oil from unstable regions, and Keystone XL pipeline will help do that,” Valentin added. Keystone XL will allow a 40 percent reduction in oil imports from the Middle East and Venezuela.

Studies conducted by The Perryman Group, an economic analysis firm, show that the $7 billion to be spent constructing the pipeline will:

Stimulate some $20 billion in new spending in the U.S. economy;
Create 118,000 additional jobs, beyond the 13,000 directly involved in building the pipeline;
Add $6.5 billion to the personal income of Americans; and
Create significant employment and contracting business opportunities for Hispanic workers and businesses.

NHPO noted that building Keystone XL will help the U.S. climb out of its prolonged economic downturn.

“We’d be far better off if the State Department had approved it already,” Valentin said. “The pipeline meets or exceeds all federal standards for safety and environmental protection, and the benefits begin immediately when the State Department issues the permit.”

“It’s important for the State Department to act now. We urge Secretary Clinton to grant Keystone XL its permit without any further delay,” Valentin said.

The National Hispanic Professionals Organization is a rapidly growing organization whose members represent the full spectrum of business and professions in which Hispanics are engaged. Since its founding in 2004, NHPO has been a strong advocate for programs and policies that enhance our nation’s economic growth and opportunities in which Hispanic professionals and businesses can participate.

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