Expanding Apprenticeships in America – Part 2


By Cotney Construction Law.

Article discusses how to establish an administrative and legislative committee that can be responsible for implementing a recruitment program of this magnitude and how to effectively produce better results from our current federal workforce programs.

As construction lawyers, we know that recruiting capable young men and women into the construction sector’s workforce is extremely important and can also be very challenging. With a significant percentage of skilled workers preparing to retire in the next ten years, we will need the next talented generation of contractors, engineers, and architects to emerge in the industry.

As we discussed in the first part of this article, President Donald Trump has imposed an executive order orchestrating the creation of one million apprenticeship positions within the next two years. We educated you on the plan to implement more apprenticeship opportunities in third-party sectors while promoting these opportunities to everyone from higher education sectors to military branches to rehabilitated prisoners.

Creating a Task Force

With the Department of Labor’s guidance, a “Task Force” will be established to “identify strategies and proposals to promote apprenticeships.” The emphasis of this Task Force is to establish a recruiting presence in sectors that previously had inadequate results and improve upon these results.

Other responsibilities of the Task Force include:

  • Create federal proposals that advocate for apprenticeships
  • Develop “administrative and legislative reforms” that facilitate the success of these recruitment programs
  • Devise successful strategies for creating “industry-recognized” apprenticeship programs
  • Utilize the most effective tactics for “amplifying and encouraging private-sector initiative to promote apprenticeships”

The Task Force Board of Advisors

Because this council group is established by the Department of Labor, the Secretary of the Department Labor acts as Chair of the Task Force with the Secretaries of the Department of Education and the Department of Commerce acting as Vice-Chairs. The entire committee will consist of no more than twenty members.

With many federally-funded workforce development programs struggling to effectively recruit and prepare young men and women into the workforce, the future of recruitment may need to utilize new methods to effectively acquire the next generation of workers. As Ft. Myers construction attorneys, we are devoted to every aspect of the construction industry. Recruiting young individuals into the workforce will be a critical component to the future of the construction industry.

Reducing Workforce Development Programs

As we have discussed previously, one of the major points of emphasis that the President stated when he announced this executive order was to utilize a different approach to creating apprenticeship opportunities for skilled workers. In other words, spending billions of federal and state dollars annually on training programs, certifications, community colleges, and other sectors to prepare young men and women for the workforce is no longer feasible. As we discussed before, many of these federal-funded programs may be either reduced or eliminated by implementing more opportunities in third-party sectors for apprenticeship programs.

The Evaluation Process

Because of the need for more centralized workforce development strategies, many federal programs will essentially go through an auditing process to determine their overall level of effectiveness. Part of this process of evaluating these federal programs will be to undergo a budgetary submission process to the Director of the Office of Management and Budget (OMB). Specifically, the head of an agency will present a list of programs overseen by their agency that are “designed to promote skills development and workplace readiness.”

Along with this submission, the agency will be required to submit:

  • Any relevant data pertaining to the success of the program.
  • Advice for “administrative and legislative reforms that would improve their outcomes and effectiveness for American workers and employers.”
  • Ways they can either reduce or terminate those programs that are “ineffective, redundant, or unnecessary.”

After receiving these submissions, the Director of the OMB will evaluate the applications and offer advice on how the agencies can “fulfill their obligations.”

If you would like to speak to a construction attorney, please contact us today.

Disclaimer: The information contained in this article is for general educational information only. This information does not constitute legal advice, is not intended to constitute legal advice, nor should it be relied upon as legal advice for your specific factual pattern or situation.

Editor’s note: This article first published on Cotney Construction Law’s blog and can be viewed here.


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