CAREERS Act Maintains Local Role in Job Training, Career Development Initiatives
Larmouth, Mary-Margaret, Nation's Cities Weekly
The House last week preserved important roles for local elected officials in the development, implementation, and oversight of job training programs. The CAREERS Act (H.R. 1617) - an NLC- supported proposal which would overhaul of federal job training programs through block grants to the states-passed the House with strong bi-partisan support by a vote of 345-79.
The CAREERS Act Consolidated and Reformed Education, Employment, and Rehabilitation Systems Act), sponsored by Rep. William F. Goodling (R-PA, Chrmn. Economic and Educational Opportunities Committee) and Rep. Howard "Buck" McKeon (R-CA), would consolidate over 100 current education, training, and employment assistance programs into three block grants to the States. These grants would target youth workforce preparation, adult training, and adult education and literacy.
NLC President Carolyn Long Banks, in a letter to members of the Committee on Economic and Educational Opportunities, expressed strong support for H.R. 1617. "The partnerships among local elected officials and the business community that have been forged over the past 13 years have proven effective in ensuring that workforce development efforts reach those who are most in need of job training. Your legislation recognizes the value of these partnerships as no other consolidation proposal does."
H.R. 1617 maintains a significant role for local elected officials and representatives from the private sector in workforce development programs. The measure places accountability at the local level by requiring the establishment of local workforce development boards appointed by local elected officials under the guidance of governors. …