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What They’re Saying: Employers Praise Job Training Reforms

Organizations representing our nation’s employers are applauding the commonsense reforms included in the Supporting Knowledge and Investing in Lifelong Skills (SKILLS) Act, which was approved by the House Education and the Workforce Committee on Wednesday. As noted in letters to the committee, the SKILLS Act (H.R. 803) will reform the nation’s broken job training system by strengthening the role of employers in workforce development decisions and helping workers access the training they need to fill in-demand jobs:

“The [SKILLS Act] would repeal many ineffective and duplicative federal training and employment programs… this consolidation, when combined with additional state and local flexibility for the delivery of these services, would allow more adults and dislocated workers to more efficiently receive the services they need to not only find a job, but also stay employed…The Chamber applauds provisions of the ’SKILLS Act’ that address this problem through a reservation of funding for training based on an analysis of the job needs of the local area. ” – U.S. Chamber of Commerce

H.R. 803 will enable small businesses, which create more than 65 percent of all new jobs in America, to continue developing training programs and career opportunities. By serving their communities through local workforce investment boards, which will be enhanced by this legislation, business leaders can become more involved in career development programs and serve as an authority on training, skills and job opportunities in their communities.” - Associated Builders and Contractors

“A strong and skilled workforce is vital to the construction industry and the nation’s economic recovery… The [SKILLS Act] offers easier to access and increased training for potential workers. In addition, the bill would offer training with skill sets that better match the needs and demands of the construction industry.”- The Associated General Contractors of America

“[The SKILLS Act] will give state and local governments more flexibility to consolidate employment and training programs and services at the state level in order to improve administrative efficiency, eliminate waste and improve support for workers. NRCA supports H.R. 803 because it will strengthen the role of employers and provide more flexibility in our workforce develop system.” – National Roofing Contractors Association

“Improving [the workforce development system] through reauthorization would help employers traverse the workforce development system and enable American workers to receive the high-skilled training our country and employers so desperately need… Manufacturers are pleased to see a significant effort to reform the [Workforce Investment Act] system by reducing the bureaucracy and allowing workforce training dollars to focus on training.”National Association of Manufacturers

FIA strongly endorses H.R. 803 because it addresses much needed reform of our country’s job training system... We believe that H.R. 803 helps to accomplish these goals by reducing multiple bureaucracies and trading wasteful spending for effective funding, and by improving the involvement of the employers and community colleges in a local area.” - Forging Industry Association

“Workforce development and training programs can be vital to people who have lost their jobs, especially in this challenging economy, but these programs can only succeed if individuals know where to find help and can access that help with ease and simplicity… The improvements included in the SKILLS Act make sense and are long overdue.” – National Council of Chain Restaurants

We strongly support the SKILLS Act strengthening role given to employers within the workforce investment system, as well as the fact that it provides individuals necessary training from the start… As our nation continues to struggle with persistently high unemployment, job seekers are faced with a confusing and ineffective maze of job training programs. We support this legislation’s attempt at streamlining workforce training programs and at providing workers more effective job training services.” – National Restaurant Association

The lodging industry appreciates your efforts to reform and modernize federal workforce development programs so that more Americans can obtain the skills they need to obtain employment… Workforce development programs were created to assist Americans secure jobs, not to create a Byzantine maze of confusing and redundant bureaucracies to frustrate the unemployed and employers alike. The SKILLS Act would consolidate 35 existing federal employment and training programs into a single Workforce Investment Fund.” - American Hotel & Lodging Association

“Understanding what the actual employers need in various areas of the country ensures training can be adapted to the local demands. As a result, jobs can be filled. One way in which the SKILLS Act would accomplish this is by increasing employer involvement in the local training boards.” – National Retail Federation

The SKILLS Act would help [the workforce development system] become more effective by focusing training on ‘in-demand’ job opportunities, like trucking; making more funds available for job training by reducing red tape, lowering overhead costs, and consolidating programs; and increasing the representation of employers on local workforce boards.” – Nebraska Trucking Association

I urge you to support passage of H.R. 803, the Supporting Knowledge and Investing in Lifelong Skills (SKILLS) Act… The importance of educational assistance through [the Workforce Investment Act] is growing in our industry and others… We are already experiencing a shortage of 20,000 drivers, a shortage that could grow significantly unless we can attract trained drivers.” – West Virginia Trucking Association

To learn more about the SKILLS Act, visit /skillsact/.


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