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Public Statements

SKILLS Act

Floor Speech

By:
Date:
Location: Washington, DC

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Mrs. WAGNER. Madam Speaker, the 113th Congress was elected to tackle the "big problems''--and there is no bigger problem facing our country right now than getting hardworking Americans back to work with the skills they need to compete in a very tough economy.

Today, the Federal Government currently operates more than 50 different job training programs, many of which are duplicative, at a cost of $18 million annually to taxpayers. With nearly 20 million Americans unemployed or underemployed, it's time to cut through the red tape and start training individuals with the skills they need to find high-paying middle class jobs.

That's why the House will take up the SKILLS Act, which streamlines 35 overlapping job training programs, including many identified by the nonpartisan GAO, and eliminates unnecessary red tape so that State and local resources go directly to job seekers.

According to a report released by St. Louis Community College, 76 percent of employers found that workers lacked the proper training to contribute right away, and the most in-demand certificates for job openings were for registered nurses. The SKILLS Act addresses those needs.

It's time we start investing in nurses, medical assistants, and manufacturing technicians, and be sure to cut the ineffective government programs that do little to train individuals with skills they need.

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