Letter to Hilda Solis, Secretary of Labor


By:  Claire McCaskill
Date: Nov. 15, 2011
Location: Washington, DC

U.S. Senator Claire McCaskill today continued her effort to strengthen employment among the nation's military veterans, asking the U.S. Department of Labor for information on how government contractors are fulfilling their legal requirement to employ and promote veterans.

Under federal law, companies with government contracts must submit reports, known as VETS-100 or VETS-100A, which detail the number of new hires and current employees who are veterans. Contractors are also required to list certain job openings with employment service delivery systems and to create and maintain affirmative action plans for specified groups of veterans. The Secretary of Labor is then required to submit an annual report to Congress regarding contractors' compliance with those requirements, and their impact on the employment of veterans

In a letter to Secretary of Labor Hilda Solis, McCaskill requested detailed information on contractor hiring practices for the past ten years in order to determine whether contractors have been complying with the law.

McCaskill, Chairman of the Senate Subcommittee on Contractor Oversight, expressed concern that contractors may not be accurately reporting their employment numbers. McCaskill said that requiring contractors to give preference to veterans seeking employment, particularly those who have recently returned from service in Iraq and Afghanistan, is a critical and timely issue.

Since joining the U.S. Senate, McCaskill has been an outspoken advocate for the nation's troops and veterans. Last week, McCaskill helped pass the VOW to Hire Heroes Act, which was approved by the Senate with overwhelming bipartisan support. The legislation incentivizes the hiring of unemployed veterans by providing businesses tax credits.

McCaskill's letter to the Secretary of Labor is available on her website, HERE.

Dear Madam Secretary:

As part of the Subcommittee's ongoing oversight of federal contracting, I am writing to request information regarding veterans' employment under federal contracts.

Under federal law, companies with government contracts or subcontracts are required to take "affirmative action" to employ and promote veterans. As part of this responsibility, contractors must submit reports (known as VETS-100 or VETS-100A) to the Department of Labor detailing the number of employees and the number of new hires that are veterans. They are also required to list certain job openings with employment service delivery systems and create and maintain affirmative action plans for specified veterans. In addition, certain employment service delivery systems must give veterans priority referral to job listings received by government contractors' compliance with these requirements and their impact on the employment of veterans.

To assist the Subcommittee in its oversight, I request that you provide the following information for the last 10 years:

(1) The annual reports detailing contractor compliance and veterans' outcomes and a confirmation that these reports have been delivered to the Committees of jurisdiction;
(2) Profiles of contractors submitting VETS-100 or VETS-100A reports, including their size, procurement activity, and location; and
(3) Evaluations of compliance by employment service delivery systems in providing priority referral.

I request that you provide this information as soon as possible, but in no case later than Friday, December 2, 2011. If you determine that you will unable to make a compete production by this date, please contact Subcommittee staff to discuss possible modifications to this schedule.

The jurisdiction of the Subcommittee on Contracting Oversight is set forth in Senate Rule XXV clause 1(k); Senate Resolution 445 section 101 (108th Congress); and Senate Resolution 73 (111th Congress). An attachment to this letter provides additional information about how to respond to the Subcommittee's request.

Please have your staff contact Margaret Daum at (202) 224-4462 with any questions. Please send any official correspondence relating to this request to Kelsey_Stroud@hsgac.senate.gov.


Claire McCaskill

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