IN SUPPORT OF INCREASED FUNDING FOR THE LOCAL WORKFORCE INVESTMENT ACT FUNDS

WHEREAS, the country is experiencing an economic slowdown with 1.96 million layoffs last year alone, according to the House of Representatives, which has resulted in a national unemployment rate of 6 percent; and

WHEREAS, the current budget proposes a $655 million cut in funding for the workforce training programs at the U.S. Department of Labor Employment and Training Administration this year, including the Workforce Investment Act (WIA) formula funded programs for adults, youth and dislocated workers and the Youth Opportunity Grants program; and

WHEREAS, the proposed FY2003 cuts and those continuing in outlying years will seriously damage our nation's ability to provide workforce preparation and placement services to businesses, laid off workers, job seekers, veterans, dislocated workers, youth, individuals with disabilities, and others; and

WHEREAS, WIA and related workforce development services have played a critical role in the United States' unprecedented success reforming welfare and supporting former recipients' transition to work; and

WHEREAS, support for the U.S. Department of Labor would help our nation's job seekers secure employment, strengthen the competitiveness of American business, promote economic growth, and extend the benefits of a healthy economy to disadvantaged adults,

NOW, THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED that The U.S. Conference of Mayors requests that the Administration and Congress make a commitment to the locally driven workforce investment system to allow cities across the country to serve those who become unemployed as a result of the economic slowdown and also to continue to meet the demands needed for a 21st century workforce; and

BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that The Conference of Mayors calls upon Congress to increase the Administration's current proposed funding for the U.S. Department of Labor Employment and Training Administration's budget at no less than the FY 2001 appropriated levels and specifically to increase funding for WIA formula funded programs for adults, youth and dislocated workers, and the Youth Opportunity Grants program; and

BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that The U.S. Conference calls upon Congress to restore the dislocated worker formula grant rescission of $110 million and to provide $550 million for dislocated worker formula grants in the FY 02 Supplemental Appropriations bill.