Last week, the House Appropriations Committee’s Subcommittee on Labor, Health and Human Services, Education, and Related Agencies held its first hearing of the Fiscal Year (FY) 2023 funding cycle to examine the Department of Education’s FY 23 budget request. Secretary of Education Miguel Cardona was the featured panelist. During the hearing, several Members of Congress emphasized the need for strong workforce investments. Two in particular—Representatives Andy Harris (R-MD) and Lucille Roybal-Allard (D-CA) —each mentioned the stigma of pursuing trade skills education and training instead of attending a four-year institution. Both noted that sectors across the economy are struggling with finding workers and that investments in work based learning are essential to sustain economic growth in this country.
As we noted a couple of weeks ago, House Career and Technical Education Caucus co-chairs Reps. Jim Langevin (D-RI) and Glenn “GT” Thompson (R-PA) led a letter to the Labor, Health and Human Services, Education, and Related Agencies Appropriations Subcommittee requesting robust funding in the FY 2023 budget for workforce development and the Perkins Grant program that funds CTE initiatives across the country. The final letter was signed by 127 House members, showcasing broad bipartisan support for investments in workforce.
As we also have noted, Rep. Langevin is retiring at the end of the year. ABMA attended a fundraiser for Rep. Thompson last week, who noted the need to find a successor to be the Democrat co-chair of the CTE Caucus. We have a few good suggestions for Rep. Thompson, but if there are House Democrats that you have a relationship with and could recommend to serve in this key workforce development role, please contact us.
Build Back Better
A bipartisan group of Senators has met three times over the last two weeks to try to forge a consensus on the next iteration of the Build Back Better legislation. The talks are being led by Senator Joe Manchin (D-WV) and he is joined by Senators Kevin Cramer (R-ND), Tom Carper (D-DE), Mark Kelly (D-AZ), Chris Coons (D-DE), Mitt Romney (R-UT), Bill Cassidy (R-LA.), Brian Schatz (D-HI), John Hickenlooper (D-CO), and Lisa Murkowski (R-AK). Rep. Ro Khanna (D-CA.) is also participating as the lone member of the House involved with the group. Last night’s meeting featured a discussion of renewable energy tax credits that may make it into this next package. From conversations we have had with staff, there is no consensus yet on the shape this legislation will take and what will or will not be included. ABMA is close to the process and will keep you apprised of developments not only on the substantive provisions, but more importantly how they plan to pay for them.