U.S. Rep. Todd Rokita, a member of the House Committee on Education and the Workforce, today voted in support of the Supporting Knowledge and Investing in Lifelong Skills (SKILLS) Act (H.R. 803) during a legislative markup of the legislation by the committee. The bill includes proposals to reduce the "footprint" of the Department of Labor bureaucracy that mirror reforms authored by Rokita in an education bill last year.
"With an actual unemployment rate estimated to exceed 14%, improving our workforce development system is critical in helping struggling Americans get back on their feet with better training.
"While some have only advocated throwing more money at unemployment and training, Republicans on the committee have instead passed the SKILLS Act to not only improve workforce training at the state and local level, but also to find efficiencies, eliminate duplicative programs, and reform a workforce system that encourages growth at less cost," said Rokita.
Many of the reforms of the SKILLS Act build upon reforms to the Departments of Education and Labor that Representative Rokita championed in the 112th Congress by zeroing in on overlapping programs and ensuring that the corresponding spending actually is eliminated from the federal agency. You can learn more about Representative Rokita's bureaucracy reform proposals in the previous Congress in an editorial for Indiana's Hoosier Access blog here.
The SKILLS Act was referred favorably by the committee with a 23-0 vote.