Daines, Bipartisan Senate Colleagues Team Up to Protect Job Corps from Closure

U.S. SENATE—Teaming up to protect the country’s Job Corps programs from closure, U.S. Senators Steve Daines (R-Mont.) and Jon Tester (D-Mont.) introduced legislation today to prevent the removal of funds from these critical employment programs.

Today the Senators introduced legislation, the Job Corps Protection Act, that blocks the Administration from using federal government funds in 2019 or 2020 to close any Job Corps Civilian Conservation Centers in the United States.  The bill will also prohibit any federal government agency from making changes to agreements that operate Job Corps facilities—preventing them from privatization.

“Montana’s CCC programs help create jobs and support our rural communities,” Daines said. “Not only do they help drive our local economy, they support young Montanans with invaluable training in important fields including wildland firefighting and the trades.

“Whether it is the businesses who rely on Job Corps or the students who graduate, we need everyone in this chamber, Republicans and Democrats, to make sure that we have Job Corps around for our next generation and the generations after,” Tester said.  “Without important resources like Job Corps, we are making it harder than ever for young people in rural areas to access the job training they need to succeed in the 21st century economy.”

The Trump Administration announced last month that it would close nine Job Corps Civilian Conservation Centers across the country.  In that same announcement, the Administration unveiled a plan to effectively privatize the program by transferring 16 Job Corps centers from the U.S. Department of Agriculture to the U.S. Department of Labor.

Job Corps are located in numerous states across the country.  People ages 16-24 are eligible to voluntarily enroll in Job Corps for hands-on job training.  Many businesses partner with local Job Corps to meet their need for high-skilled labor.

Last year, the Senate Appropriations Committee passed legislation that invested $1.7 billion in Job Corps programs across the country.

Senators who support the bipartisan legislation include: Senators John Boozman (R-Ark.) Jeff Merkley (D-Ore.), Mark Warner (D-Va.), Tim Kaine (D-Va.), Maria Cantwell (D-Wa.), Ron Wyden (D-Ore.), and Tammy Baldwin (D-Wis.)