WASHINGTON, D.C. | June 5, 2012
On Thursday, June 7 at 10:00 a.m., the U.S. House Committee on Education and the Workforce, chaired by Rep. John Kline (R-MN), will hold a markup of the Workforce Investment Improvement Act of 2012 (H.R. 4297). The markup will take place in room 2175 of the Rayburn House Office Building.
According to the Department of Labor, nearly 13 million Americans are unemployed despite 3.7 million job openings nationwide, indicating the outdated federal workforce development system is failing to provide the training and assistance job seekers need.
The problems in the system haven’t gone unnoticed. A Wall Street Journal editorial recently noted "a federal job training program that puts people back to work is hard to find." Even President Obama has called on Congress to cut through the "maze of confusing [job] training programs" that is crippling workers’ ability to gain the skills employers need.
Since the start of the 112th Congress, the House Education and the Workforce Committee has held a series of hearings to examine the challenges facing the workforce development system. In response, Representatives Virginia Foxx (R-NC), Howard “Buck” McKeon (R-CA), and Joe Heck (R-NV) introduced the Workforce Investment Improvement Act of 2012 to strengthen job training and employment assistance for workers and reauthorize the Workforce Investment Act of 1998.
The commonsense proposals included in H.R. 4297 will revamp the current ineffective workforce development system by:
- Enhancing the ability of local leaders to respond quickly to employers’ and workers’ needs by eliminating dozens of ineffective programs and establishing a single, flexible Workforce Investment Fund;
- Improving access to employment and training services in remote areas;
- Strengthening the role of employers in state and local workforce development systems by requiring a two-thirds business majority on both workforce investment boards;
- Enabling workers to gain immediate access to the education and skills necessary to fill in-demand jobs; and
- Ensuring workforce training programs are tailored to the job opportunities available in the local community.
To learn more about this markup, visit www.edworkforce.house.gov/markups. To learn more about the Workforce Investment Improvement Act of 2012, click here.
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