The House Subcommittee on Higher Education and Workforce Training held a hearing yesterday to consider ways to consolidate and improve federal job training programs.
Rep. Virginia Foxx (NC), chairwoman of the Subcommittee, voiced concern about wasteful spending after a recent report, produced by the Government Accountability Office (GAO), noted that 44 of 47 federal job training programs overlap with at least one other program.
The Subcommittee and witnesses reviewed instances of program overlap, as well as state and local efforts to consolidate job training programs. Florida’s Agency for Workforce Innovation and the Texas Workforce Commission were cited as successful examples. Witnesses from both states advocated for program consolidation and described the positive effects in their states.
The author of the GAO report, also a witness, recommended collocating services and staff through a one-stop shop approach.
A witness from the Center for Law and Social Policy was concerned about losing valuable job training programs. She said that programs may overlap, but that does not mean the services are duplicative.
Rep. Ruben E. Hinojosa (TX) agreed that job training programs are valuable, and emphasized that adult education and workforce development must be a priority. He also would like to see the Workforce Investment Act (WIA) improved and reauthorized in this Congress.
Click here to view the archived hearing and transcripts.