2015-11-05 National Governors Association

Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act

The Honorable Thad Cochran
Chair
Committee on Appropriations
U.S. Senate
Washington, DC 20510

The Honorable Barbara Mikulski
Ranking Member
Committee on Appropriations
U.S. Senate
Washington, DC 20510

The Honorable Hal Rogers
Chair
Committee on Appropriations
U.S. House of Representatives
Washington, DC 20515

The Honorable Nita Lowey
Ranking Member
Committee on Appropriations
U.S. House of Representatives
Washington, DC 20515

Dear Chairman Cochran, Chairman Rogers, Senator Mikulski and Representative Lowey:

The nation’s governors call on Congress to fully restore the Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act (WIOA) governors’ 15 percent set-aside and maintain funding for WIOA as part of FY 2016 appropriations.

We applaud the Senate Appropriations Committee for placing the set-aside at 15 percent in their FY 2016 Labor, Health and Human Services and Education bill. While we appreciate the House Appropriations Committee’s partial increase of the set-aside in their FY 2016 bill, we hope that they will join with the Senate in strong support of the full 15 percent set-aside.

With partial increases to the set-aside over the past two years, states began re-starting workforce services that local workforce agencies depended on before they were shuttered by the dramatic decrease in the set-aside in FY 2011. WIOA is set to have an immediate and profound effect on students, job seekers and workers as well as businesses and industries. However, we believe that the law will not realize its full potential as long as this critical tool for state innovation is missing.

Governors look forward to working with you to fulfill the promise of WIOA by using a fully-restored set-aside to place our nation’s workers on a path to success.

Sincerely,

Governor Jay Inslee
Chair
Education and Workforce Committee

Governor Robert Bentley
Vice Chair
Education and Workforce Committee

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