Source: United States House of Representatives – Congressmen Steven Horsford (NV-04)
May 1, 2020
Washington, D.C. — Today, Congressman Steven Horsford (NV-04) joined Education and Labor Chairman Bobby Scott to introduce the Relaunching America’s Workforce Act, which authorizes $15 billion in funding to help workers sharpen their skills and quickly re-enter the workforce as the economy emerges from the deepest decline since the Great Depression due to the coronavirus pandemic.
“Nevada is one of the hardest hit states in the country, and roughly 400,000 Nevadans have already filed for unemployment insurance benefits since mid-March, and many in our workforce will not have jobs to return to when we begin to recover from this pandemic. As the nation begins to recover from the COVID-19 pandemic and we relaunch our economy, we must do everything we can to support those who have lost their jobs and revitalize those businesses that have suffered economic devastation,” Congressman Horsford said. “After working for years to provide job training opportunities in Nevada, I know the importance of giving our nation’s workers a fair chance to grow their skills. The Relaunching America’s Workforce Act is the solution our workforce needs.”
The Relaunching America’s Workforce Act increases support for layoff aversion strategies that allow employers to receive partial funding to keep workers on the payroll while employees improve their job skills through training. Specifically, this legislation sets aside $2.5 billion for state dislocated worker grants, which will be key for Nevadans whose hospitality jobs may not be available to them at the end of this pandemic. The bill also restarts a grant program supporting partnerships between community colleges and industry, which was implemented during the Great Recession and is geared toward getting workers skills for in-demand jobs.
Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, more than 30 million Americans filed for unemployment in the last month, and millions more are likely to be laid off through July. The unprecedented spike in unemployment is likely to significantly increase demand for workforce development services, including training, career navigation, and other services that support dislocated workers or employers looking to keep workers employed.
The bill would increase funding and flexibility for states to decide how to use workforce-training resources as authorized by the WIOA, which could help workers in hard-hit industries prepare for new jobs in different fields.
The $15 billion for this bill is roughly double what was allocated for workforce training in the 2009 American Recovery and Reinvestment Act, which was $7.7 billion. The projected funding breakdown is as follows: