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On Thursday, Senators Rob Portman (R-OH) and Michael Bennet (D-CO) introduced the Careers Through Responsive, Efficient and Effective Retraining (CAREER) Act, legislation designed to improve the effectiveness of career training programs. National Skills Coalition recently wrote to Senators Portman and Bennet, expressing support for the CAREER Act.
The CAREER Act would establish a pilot program in at least five states to implement a pay-for-performance model for the delivery of job training services. It would also steer federal retraining funds to programs that provide workers with industry-recognized credentials in demand by industries in state and local workforce areas. It would further require states to submit data on programs that lead to an industry-recognized credential and to report state need for such credentials.
Importantly, the CAREER Act would also require the White House to produce a “reorganization plan” for the federal workforce development system. The plan must increase efficiencies as well as integration and alignment of programs without decreasing services or access to services for eligible participants. In developing the reorganization plan, the White House must seek input from the states, local workforce investment boards, businesses, workforce advocates and community-based organizations, labor organizations, and educational organizations.
The CAREER Act was previously introduced toward the end of the 112th Congress; however, the Senate did not pursue further action on the bill. NSC will continue to monitor the CAREER Act and will provide updates if the Senate takes up this legislation.