On January 28, U.S. House Education and Labor Committee Chair Bobby Scott (D-Va.) along with Reps. Andy Levin (D-Mich.) and Suzanne Bonamici (D-Ore.), reintroduced the Relaunching America’s Workforce Act (H.R. 602) which would invest $15 billion in America’s workforce development system in response to the negative impact the COVID-19 pandemic has had on the nation’s workers and businesses. The legislation authorizes funding to help workers sharpen their skills and quickly re-enter the workforce as the U.S. economy emerges from decline.
The Relaunching America's Workforce Act is based on the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA) (P.L. 111-5) model and funding would be directed through existing workforce development programs to direct resources to the local level as quickly as possible. The legislation includes $7.5 billion for the Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act (WIOA) Title I, including $2.5 billion each for Adults, Dislocated Workers and Youth grants, a key workforce funding program for state and county governments.
The legislation includes:
- $2.5 billion for Dislocated Worker Grants
- $2.5 billion for Youth Workforce Activities
- $2.5 billion for Adult Training Activities
- $1 billion for Wagner- Peyser/Employment Services
- $500 million for Registered Apprenticeships
- $500 million for National Dislocated Worker Grants
- $500 million for JobCorps
- $350 million for Reentry Employment Opportunities
- $250 million for YouthBuild
- $150 million for Migrant and Seasonal Farmworkers
- $150 million for Native American Programs
- $1 billion for Adult Education and Literacy
- $2 billion for Community College and Industry Partnership Grants
NACo collaborated with National Association of Workforce Boards (NAWB), National League of Cities (NLC) and the United States Conference of Mayors (USCM) to send a letter of support for the legislation in the 116th Congress. To view a section by section summary of the legislation, click here.
For additional NACo resources on workforce development programs, please see the following links:
- NACo Policy Brief: Support Workforce and Local Business Development: The Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act (WIOA)
- NACo Report: Counties and the Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act