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What They're Saying: Governors Support GOP Job Training Reform Efforts

The nation’s governors are voicing their support for reforms included in the Supporting Knowledge and Investing in Lifelong Skills (SKILLS) Act (H.R. 803), legislation to create a more transparent and effective workforce development system. As the leaders note in letters to the committee, H.R. 803 will expand decision-making at the local level, allowing states to eliminate waste and implement programs tailored to the needs of local employers and job seekers.

“[The SKILLS Act] makes government more effective in that it simplifies and consolidates duplicative and overlapping job training programs. By streamlining federal workforce training programs, the SKILLS Act would reduce the administrative burden that current law places on the states. It also provides states with the needed flexibility to tailor job training programs, acknowledging that the needs of New Jersey are surely different than those of other states.” – The Honorable Chris Christie, Governor of New Jersey

“A well trained and educated workforce is necessary for Pennsylvania to compete in the new, global economy…The SKILLS Act is a welcome proposal that would bring greater efficiency and accountability to the workforce development system…The SKILLS Act restores 15% state set-aside funding to support innovative strategies statewide and locally…In addition to providing flexibility and encouraging innovation, the restored state set-aside also supports the needs of our most vulnerable citizens.” – The Honorable Tom Corbett, Governor of Pennsylvania  

“Among its significant provisions, H.R. 803 improves accountability and transparency by requiring states to adhere to ‘common performance measures’ for all workforce services to help eliminate waste… Utah's stewardship of federal funds for workforce programs have proven to be innovative, efficient and committed to positive results for our customers and the taxpayer. Passage of H.R. 803 will give us the flexibility to improve on already impressive outcomes.” – The Honorable Gary Herbert, Governor of Utah

“The SKILLS Act would provide a more transparent and versatile system, one that offers the opportunity to move forward with Virginia’s goals for education and workforce credential attainment, and one that will allow more governors to better address the skills gap in targeted industry sectors. This will result in more Virginians finding jobs and more Virginia businesses increasing opportunities.” – The Honorable Bob McDonnell, Governor of Virginia

“H.R. 803 proposes a market-driven approach to talent development designed to prepare individuals seeking employment for the jobs of today – and the jobs of tomorrow.. Increasing the business representation on state and local boards improves our alignment with market needs. In Florida, we have found that volunteer board members who come from businesses of all sizes and stages bring with them a wealth of experience that help us shape policies with a keen focus on reducing red tape, forging strategic partnerships, measuring return on investment, and pursuing greater efficiencies.” – The Honorable Rick Scott, Governor of Florida

“In today’s global economy, business development, talent development, infrastructure and adult education must work together on a region-wide basis, to leverage scarce resources and drive economic prosperity… By removing bureaucratic barriers and limiting prescriptive funding provisions, the SKILLS Act will provide states with the flexibility to address unique workforce development challenges with solutions that will develop the talent our new economy demands.” – The Honorable Rick Snyder, Governor of Michigan

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


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