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Legislative Update: Education Jobs Fund, America WORKS, Technical School Training Bill

Education Jobs Fund Passes House, But President Threatens Veto

As predicted earlier this week, the House voted on the Supplemental Appropriations Act. During the vote, the House passed amendment by Rep. Dave Obey (WI) which included $10 billion for education jobs and $4.95 billion for Pell grants by a vote of 239-182. However, White House has issued a Statement of Administration Policy which states that “If the final bill presented to the President includes cuts to education reforms, the President’s senior advisors would recommend a veto.”

The bill now returns to the Senate where it will be subject to any further amendments by the Senate or by concurrence with the House amendments. If the Senate further amends the bill, it will return to the House. It is unclear when the Senate will take up the bill because Congress is in recess next week.

America WORKS Act

Last week, Sen. Kay Hagan (NC) introduced S. 3529, the America WORKS Act which would require Federal job training and career education programs to give priority to programs that provide an industry-recognized and nationally portable credential. This bill would have implications for postsecondary Perkins indicators, and we are working with Sen. Hagan’s staff on getting this language amended. We will keep you updated on our progress.

Technical School Training Bill

On June 24, Rep. John Barrow (GA) introduced H.R. 5594, a bill that would amend the Workforce Investment Act (WIA) to establish a technical school training subsidy program. This program would go a long way in ensuring that Workforce Investment Act funds would be used to provide career technical education and training services so that individuals are prepared for lifelong careers. This bill aligns to our recommendations for WIA reauthorization which call for greater access to high-quality training.

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