Text: H.R.6617 — 110th Congress (2007-2008)All Information (Except Text)

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Introduced in House (07/24/2008)


110th CONGRESS
2d Session
H. R. 6617


To strengthen communities through English literacy, civics, education, and immigrant integration programs.


IN THE HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES

July 24, 2008

Mr. Honda (for himself, Ms. Ros-Lehtinen, Mr. Hinojosa, Mr. Grijalva, Mr. Ellison, Mr. Cuellar, Mr. Abercrombie, Ms. Bordallo, Ms. Hirono, Mr. Faleomavaega, Ms. Matsui, and Mr. Becerra) introduced the following bill; which was referred to the Committee on Education and Labor, and in addition to the Committee on Ways and Means, for a period to be subsequently determined by the Speaker, in each case for consideration of such provisions as fall within the jurisdiction of the committee concerned


A BILL

To strengthen communities through English literacy, civics, education, and immigrant integration programs.

Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives of the United States of America in Congress assembled,

SECTION 1. Short title.

This Act may be cited as the “Strengthening Communities Through Education and Integration Act of 2008”.

SEC. 2. Findings.

Congress finds the following:

(1) According to the United States Census, over 23,000,000 United States residents do not speak English well.

(2) According to the National Assessment of Adult Literacy, 93,000,000 adults in the United States have limited reading, writing, and mathematics skills, and 14 percent of adults in the United States have below basic proficiency in prose literacy.

(3) Only three percent of the 93,000,000 adults who could benefit from adult education services, English literacy, and civics education programs actually participate in such services and programs.

(4) There is a growing and urgent need for additional English literacy and civics education programs for adults in the United States.

(5) It is beneficial to new immigrants, host communities, States, and the Nation for immigrants to timely adjust to life in the United States, learn English, become citizens, buy homes, start businesses, send their children to college, and thrive economically.

(6) A proactive policy for new Americans at the State and local levels will maximize the benefits immigrants bring to States and municipalities, while helping immigrants integrate as quickly as possible.

TITLE IExpanding English Literacy and Civics Education

SEC. 101. Increased investment in English acquisition under the Adult Education and Family Literacy Act.

(a) Integrated English literacy and civics education program.—Section 203 of the Adult Education and Family Literacy Act (20 U.S.C. 9202) is amended by adding at the end the following new paragraph:

“(19) INTEGRATED ENGLISH LITERACY AND CIVICS EDUCATION PROGRAM.—The term ‘integrated English literacy and civics education program’ means a program of instruction designed to help an English language learner achieve competence in English through contextualized instruction on the rights and responsibilities of citizenship, naturalization procedures, civic participation, and United States history and government to help such learner acquire the skills and knowledge to become an active and informed parent, worker, and community member.”.

(b) State leadership activities.—Section 223(a) of the such Act (20 U.S.C. 9223(a)) is amended by inserting after paragraph (11) the following:

“(12) Technical assistance for grant applications of faith and community-based organizations.

“(13) The study of the effectiveness of distance learning or self-study programs to assist the English language learner population acquire English.”.

(c) National Institute for Literacy.—Section 242(c)(1) of such Act (20 U.S.C. 9252(c)(1)) is amended—

(1) in subparagraph (A)—

(A) by redesignating clauses (ii), (iii), and (iv) as clauses (iii), (iv), and (v), respectively; and

(B) by inserting after clause (i) the following new clause:

“(ii) effective practices in the provision of integrated English literacy and civics education programs;”;

(2) by redesignating subparagraphs (G), (H), and (I) as subparagraphs (H), (I), and (J), respectively; and

(3) by inserting after subparagraph (F) the following new subparagraph:

“(G) to coordinate and share information with national organizations and associations that are interested in integrated English literacy and civics education programs;”.

(d) Report.—Section 242(k) of such Act (20 U.S.C. 9252(k)) is amended—

(1) in paragraph (2), by striking “and” at the end;

(2) by redesignating paragraph (3) as paragraph (4); and

(3) by inserting after paragraph (2) the following new paragraph:

“(3) a separate analysis of—

“(A) national and State adult English instruction needs;

“(B) data on the composition of recent immigration flows and immigration settlement patterns across the United States; and

“(C) estimated instructional needs based on the English ability and educational attainment of English language learners under recent migration patterns; and”.

(e) National leadership activities.—Section 243 of such Act (20 U.S.C. 9253) is amended—

(1) in paragraph (1)—

(A) in subparagraph (A), by inserting “and integrated English literacy and civics education programs” before the semicolon at the end; and

(B) in subparagraph (B), by inserting “and integrated English literacy and civics education programs” before “, based on scientific evidence”; and

(2) in paragraph (2)—

(A) in subparagraph (B), by inserting “and integrated English literacy and civics education programs” before the semicolon at the end;

(B) in subparagraph (D)(ii), by inserting “integrated English literacy and civics education programs,” before “and workplace literacy programs”; and

(C) in subparagraph (E)—

(i) in clause (i), by inserting “and integrated English literacy and civics education programs” before the semicolon at the end;

(ii) in clause (iii), by striking “and” at the end;

(iii) in clause (iv)—

(I) by striking “section 231” and inserting “sections 231 and 244”; and

(II) by inserting “and” after the semicolon; and

(iv) by adding at the end the following new clause:

“(v) the extent to which integrated English literacy and civics education programs carried out under section 244 lead participants in such programs to increase their civic participation and, if applicable, lead such participants to become United States citizens.”.

(f) Integrated English literacy and civics education.—Chapter 4 of subtitle A of such Act (20 U.S.C. 9251 et seq.) is amended by adding at the end the following new section:

“SEC. 244. Integrated English literacy and civics education programs.

“(a) Program authorized.—

“(1) IN GENERAL.—From funds appropriated to carry out this section, the Secretary shall award grants to States, from allocations under subsection (b), for integrated English literacy and civics education programs.

“(2) DEFINITION OF STATE.—In this section the term ‘State’ means each of the several States of the United States and the District of Columbia.

“(b) Allocations.—

“(1) IN GENERAL.—Subject to paragraph (2) and with respect to funds described in subsection (a), the Secretary shall allocate—

“(A) 65 percent to States on the basis of a State’s need for integrated English and civics education programs, as determined by calculating each State’s share of a ten-year average of the data compiled by the Office of Immigration Statistics of the Department of Homeland Security, for immigrants admitted for lawful permanent residence for the ten most recent years; and

“(B) 35 percent to the States on the basis of whether the State experienced growth, as measured by the average of the three most recent years for which data compiled by the Office of Immigration Statistics of the Department of Homeland Security are available, for immigrants admitted for lawful permanent residence.

“(2) MINIMUM.—No State shall receive an allocation under paragraph (1) in an amount that is less than $60,000.

“(c) Authorization of appropriation.—For the purpose of carrying out this section, there are authorized to be appropriated $200,000,000 for fiscal year 2009, $250,000,000 for fiscal year 2010, and $300,000,000 for fiscal year 2011.”.

SEC. 102. Expansion and evaluation of the Even Start Family Literacy Program.

(a) Expansion of program.—Section 1002(b)(3) of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act of 1965 (20 U.S.C. 6302(b)(3)) is amended to read as follows:

“(3) EVEN START.—For the purpose of carrying out subpart 3 of part B, there are authorized to be appropriated $350,000,000 for fiscal year 2009 and each of the 5 succeeding fiscal years.”.

(b) Even Start research and evaluation.—Subpart 3 of part B of title I of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act of 1965 (20 U.S.C. 6381 et seq.) is amended by adding at the end the following:

“SEC. 1243. Research.

“(a) In general.—In order to provide rigorous research utilizing appropriate, scientifically based research standards, the Director of the National Institute for Literacy shall design a plan (approved by the Secretary) to carry out, through a grant or contract, research into the components of successful family literacy services to inform the field and improve practice and increase program quality, in order to—

“(1) improve the quality of existing programs assisted under this subpart or other family literacy programs; and

“(2) develop models for new programs to be carried out under this subpart.

“(b) Consultation.—In conducting the research described in subsection (a), the entity with which the Director of the National Institute for Literacy contracts or awards a grant shall consult with—

“(1) Even Start coordinators and practitioners, including individuals from migrant or tribal Even Start programs;

“(2) individuals who are researchers and experts in family literacy, including early childhood and adult literacy;

“(3) individuals who are experts in literacy services for English language learners and the learners' families; and

“(4) individuals who are representatives from other national organizations involved in family literacy.

“(c) Scientifically based research on family literacy.—

“(1) IN GENERAL.—The Director of the National Institute for Literacy, in consultation with the Secretary, shall carry out research that—

“(A) is scientifically based reading research; and

“(B) determines—

“(i) the most effective ways of improving the literacy skills of adults with reading difficulties; and

“(ii) how family literacy services can best provide parents with the knowledge and skills the parents need to support the parents' children’s literacy development.

“(2) USE OF EXPERT ENTITY.—The Director of the National Institute for Literacy, in consultation with the Secretary, shall carry out the research under paragraph (1) through an entity, including a Federal agency, that has expertise in carrying out longitudinal studies of the development of literacy skills in children and adults and has developed effective interventions to help children with reading difficulties.

“(d) Dissemination.—The Director of the National Institute for Literacy shall disseminate, pursuant to section 1207, the results of research described in subsections (a) and (b) to State educational agencies and recipients of subgrants under this subpart.

“(e) Report to Congress.—Not later than 6 months after the date of completion of research under this section, the Director of the National Institute for Literacy shall—

“(1) submit a report on the research to the Secretary, the Committee on Education and Labor of the House of Representatives, and the Committee on Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions of the Senate; and

“(2) make such report publicly available.

“SEC. 1244. Longitudinal evaluation.

“(a) National William F. Goodling Even Start Evaluation.—The Director of the National Institute for Literacy shall review, make recommendations on, design, and plan for a longitudinal evaluation of the Even Start program under this subpart, as approved by the Secretary.

“(b) Considerations.—In conducting the evaluation described in subsection (a), the Director of the National Institute for Literacy shall consider—

“(1) the extent to which programs under this subpart—

“(A) provide family literacy services to adults and children not otherwise available or accessible to such children or adults, or that supplement child development or adult education services provided by other programs;

“(B) strengthen parents' knowledge and skills that support parent-child relationships, parental involvement in schools, and family literacy and other educational activities in the home;

“(C) improve adult participants' basic skill levels in reading, writing, speaking the English language, and basic mathematics; and

“(D) increase adult participants' ability to maintain and retain employment; and

“(2) the extent to which programs under this subpart link families to needed community services and how differences in the type, length, mix, and intensity of services affect the desired program goals.”.

SEC. 103. Expanded learning time for middle and secondary school English language learners.

(a) Definitions.—

(1) IN GENERAL.—Unless otherwise specified, the terms used in this section have the meanings given the terms in section 9101 of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act of 1965 (20 U.S.C. 7801).

(2) OTHER DEFINITIONS.—In this section:

(A) EXPANDED LEARNING TIME PROGRAM.—The term “expanded learning time program” means—

(i) a summer learning semester at a school served by a local educational agency;

(ii) a consolidated school district program;

(iii) an extended day program that adds not less than one hour to the school day, if the additional learning time—

(I) focuses on English language acquisition and core academics; and

(II) allows for enrichment opportunities that support learning; or

(iv) a semester or program described in clause (i), (ii), or (iii) that is operated by—

(I) a local educational agency or a public school; or

(II) a local educational agency or a public school in a partnership with—

(aa) a nonprofit organization;

(bb) a faith-based organization; or

(cc) any other entity that meets State quality assurance guidelines.

(B) STATE.—The term “State” means each of the several States of the United States and the District of Columbia.

(b) Program authorized.—From amounts appropriated under subsection (h), the Secretary of Education shall award grants under this section to each State educational agency served by a State to enable the State educational agency to provide subgrants, on a competitive basis, to local educational agencies to enable the local educational agencies to provide high quality expanded learning time programs for middle and secondary school students who are English language learners.

(c) Grant requirements.—

(1) APPROVED APPLICATIONS.—The Secretary shall only award a grant under this section to a State educational agency for which the Secretary has approved an application under this section.

(2) MATCHING REQUIREMENT.—To be eligible to receive a grant under this section, a State educational agency shall provide matching funds, from non-Federal sources, in an amount that is not less than 25 percent of the total amount of funds received under the grant.

(3) IN-KIND CONTRIBUTIONS.—In-kind contributions from private funding sources may be used to meet the matching requirement described in paragraph (2).

(4) STATE APPLICATION.—

(A) IN GENERAL.—In order to receive a grant under this section, a State educational agency shall submit an application, that was developed collaboratively with community-based organizations that serve English language learner communities, teachers, a statewide organization of teachers, a representative from public libraries, and other educators, to the Secretary at such time and in such form as the Secretary may require.

(B) CONTENTS.—The application shall include a State plan for providing high quality expanded learning time programs for middle and secondary school students who are English language learners. The State plan shall include—

(i) a description of the State needs regarding the English language learner student population;

(ii) an outline for an accountability standard to ensure the use of high quality expanded learning time programs;

(iii) any other requirement determined to be necessary by the Secretary; and

(iv) guidelines on—

(I) which expanded learning time programs are determined to be high quality; and

(II) how the State educational agency will ensure that the State educational agency will meet the requirements of subsection (e).

(d) Competitive subgrants.—

(1) IN GENERAL.—A State educational agency receiving a grant under this section shall use the grant funds to award subgrants, on a competitive basis, to local educational agencies to enable the local educational agencies to provide expanded learning time programs to middle and secondary school students who are English language learners in order to provide such students with additional language and civics education.

(2) PRIORITY.—A State educational agency receiving a grant under this section shall give priority in awarding subgrants under this section to local educational agencies that demonstrate a need for expanded learning time programs for English language learner middle and secondary school students.

(3) NEED DETERMINATION.—A State educational agency shall determine a local educational agency's need under paragraph (2) on the basis of—

(A) increases in the number of students who are English language learners and served by the local educational agency;

(B) substantial increases in the local immigrant population served by the local educational agency; and

(C) evidence that expanded learning time programs are necessary to ensure that schools served by the local educational agency will reach accountability standards under the Elementary and Secondary Education Act of 1965 (20 U.S.C. 6301 et seq.).

(4) APPLICATION.—In order to receive a subgrant under this section, a local educational agency shall submit an application to the State educational agency at such time and in such form as the State educational agency may require. The application shall—

(A) describe the needs of the middle and secondary school English language learner student population served by the local educational agency;

(B) describe the types of expanded learning time programs to be offered to middle and secondary school students who are English language learners;

(C) describe how the subgrant will be used;

(D) include guidelines on—

(i) which expanded learning time programs are considered to be high quality; and

(ii) how the local educational agency will meet the requirements of subsection (e);

(E) contain an assurance that the local educational agency will meet the requirements of subsection (e);

(F) include an outline for an accountability standard to ensure high quality expanded learning time programs;

(G) contain evidence of an agreement, between the governing body of the local educational agency and the employees of the local educational agency, including teachers, at participating schools or their recognized representatives, to work the expanded schedule;

(H) describe the process by which the local educational agency will ensure the meaningful involvement of teachers, union representatives, parents, public libraries, and school partners in the planning and implementation of the expanded learning time program; and

(I) contain any other requirement determined necessary by the State educational agency.

(5) MATCHING REQUIREMENT.—To be eligible to receive a subgrant under this section, a local educational agency shall provide matching funds, from non-Federal sources, in an amount that is not less than 15 percent of the total amount of funds received under the subgrant.

(e) Supplement, not supplant.—A State educational agency and a local educational agency shall use Federal funds received under this section only to supplement the funds that would, in the absence of such Federal funds, be made available from non-Federal sources for the education of students participating in expanded learning time programs assisted under this section, and not to supplant such funds.

(f) Duration and renewal.—

(1) DURATION OF GRANTS AND SUBGRANTS.—Grants and subgrants under this section shall be awarded for a period that does not exceed 3 years in duration.

(2) RENEWAL OF GRANTS AND SUBGRANTS.—

(A) IN GENERAL.—Grants and subgrants under this section may be renewed in 2-year increments.

(B) CONDITIONS FOR RENEWAL.—In order to be eligible to renew a grant or subgrant under this paragraph, the State educational agency or local educational agency shall demonstrate to the satisfaction of the Secretary or State educational agency, respectively, that the State educational agency or local educational agency, respectively, has complied with the terms of the grant or subgrant, respectively.

(g) Rule of construction.—Nothing in this section shall be construed to alter or otherwise affect the rights, remedies, and procedures afforded to the employees of local educational agencies under Federal, State, or local laws (including applicable regulations or court orders) or under the terms of collective bargaining agreements, memoranda of understanding, or other agreements between such employees and their employers, including the right of employees of local educational agencies to engage in good faith collective bargaining with their employers regarding their terms and conditions of employment, and the procedures used to determine such terms and conditions.

(h) Authorization of Appropriations.—For the purpose of carrying out this section, there are authorized to be appropriated $50,000,000 for fiscal year 2009 and each of the 5 succeeding fiscal years.

SEC. 104. Definitions of English language learner.

(a) Adult Education and Family Literacy Act.—The Adult Education and Family Literacy Act (20 U.S.C. 9201 et seq.) is amended—

(1) in section 203(6) (20 U.S.C. 9202(6)), by striking “individuals of limited English proficiency” and inserting “English language learners”;

(2) in section 203(10) (20 U.S.C. 9202(10))—

(A) in the paragraph heading, by striking “Individual of limited English proficiency” and inserting “English language learner”; and

(B) in the matter preceding subparagraph (A), by striking “individual of limited English proficiency” and inserting “English language learner”;

(3) in section 224(b)(10)(D) (20 U.S.C. 9224(b)(10)(D)), by striking “individuals with limited English proficiency” and inserting “English language learners”; and

(4) in section 243(2)(D)(ii) (as amended by section 101(e)(2)(B)) (20 U.S.C. 9253(2)(D)(ii)), by striking “individuals with limited English proficiency who are adults” and inserting “adult English language learners”.

(b) Elementary and Secondary Education Act of 1965.—

(1) AMENDMENT.—Section 9101(25) of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act of 1965 (20 U.S.C. 7801(25)) is amended by striking the matter preceding subparagraph (A) and inserting the following:

“(25) ENGLISH LANGUAGE LEARNER.—The term ‘English language learner’ means an individual—”.

(2) REFERENCES.—Any reference in the Elementary and Secondary Education Act of 1965 (20 U.S.C. 6301 et seq.) to an individual who is limited English proficient shall be construed to refer to an English language learner.

SEC. 105. Credits for Teachers of English Language Learners.

(a) In general.—Subpart A of part IV of subchapter A of chapter 1 of the Internal Revenue Code of 1986 (relating to nonrefundable personal credits) is amended by inserting after section 25D the following new section:

“SEC. 25E. Teachers of English language learners.

“(a) In General.—In the case of an eligible teacher, there shall be allowed a credit against the tax imposed by this chapter for the taxable year an amount equal to—

“(1) $1,500, for each of the first 5 taxable years for which the taxpayer is allowed a credit under this section, and

“(2) $1,000, for any other taxable year.

“(b) Credit allowed only for 10 taxable years.—No credit shall be allowed under this section with respect to a taxpayer for any taxable year after the 10th taxable year for which such taxpayer is allowed a credit under this section.

“(c) Eligible Teacher.—For purposes of this section—

“(1) IN GENERAL.—The term ‘eligible teacher’ means, with respect to a taxable year, any individual who is a full-time teacher in an academic subject, has received training in delivering academic instruction to English language learner students, and is employed in any English languae learner school for the academic year ending in such taxable year.

“(2) ENGLISH LANGUAGE LEARNER SCHOOL.—The term ‘English language learner school’ means any school—

“(A) which provides elementary education or secondary education, as determined under State law, and

“(B) in which 10 percent or more of the students enrolled are limited English proficient (as defined in section 9901 of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act of 1965).”.

(b) Clerical amendment.—The table of sections for such subpart is amended by inserting after the item relating to section 25D the following new item:


“Sec. 25E. Teachers in English language learner schools.”.

(c) Teacher certification expenses.—Part VII of subchapter B of chapter 1 of the Internal Revenue Code of 1986 (relating to additional itemized deductions for individuals) is amended by redesignating section 224 as section 225 and by inserting after section 223 the following new section:

“SEC. 224. Teacher certification expenses.

“(a) In General.—In the case of an individual, there shall be allowed as a deduction for teacher certification expenses paid or incurred by the taxpayer for the taxable year.

“(b) Teacher certification expenses.—

“(1) TESL CERTIFICATION EXPENSES.—For purposes of this section, the term ‘TESL certification expenses’ means tuition and fees required for the enrollment or attendance of the taxpayer or the taxpayer’s spouse at an eligible educational institution (as defined in section 25A) for a course which is required for certification of such individual as qualified to teach English to elementary or secondary school students who are limited English proficient (as defined in section 9901 of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act of 1965).

“(2) STATE BILINGUAL EDUCATION CERTIFICATION EXPENSES.—For purposes of this section, the term ‘State bilingual education certification expenses’ means tuition and fees required for the enrollment or attendance of the taxpayer or the taxpayer’s spouse at an eligible educational institution (as defined in section 25A) for a course which is required for certification of such individual as qualified to teach bilingual courses to elementary or secondary school students who are limited English proficient (as defined in section 9901 of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act of 1965).

“(3) EXCEPTIONS.—Such term shall not include any amounts to the extent such amounts—

“(A) are for a course that is part of the individual’s degree program, or

“(B) are funded by another person (or any governmental entity).

“(c) Denial of double benefit.—No deduction shall be allowed under this section for any expense for which a deduction or credit is allowed under any other provision of this chapter.”.

(d) Certification deduction allowed whether or not taxpayer itemizes other deductions.—Subsection (a) of section 62 of such Code is amended by adding at the end the following new paragraph:

“(22) TEACHER CERTIFICATION EXPENSES.—The deduction allowed by section 224.”.

(e) Clerical amendment.—The table of sections for part VII of subchapter B of chapter 1 of such Code is amended by striking the last item and inserting the following new items:


“Sec. 224. Teacher certification expenses.

“Sec. 225. Cross reference.”.

(f) Effective date.—The amendments made by this section shall apply to amounts paid or incurred in taxable years beginning after December 31, 2008.

SEC. 106. Research in adult education.

(a) In general.—Section 133(c)(A) of the Education Sciences Reform Act of 2002 (20 U.S.C. 9533(c)(A)) is amended by inserting “education and” before “literacy”.

(b) National research and development center.—

(1) IN GENERAL.—The Secretary of Education shall direct the Commissioner for Education Research of the National Center for Education Research established pursuant to section 131 of the Education Sciences Reform Act of 2002 (20 U.S.C. 9531) to establish a national research and development center for adult education and literacy as described in section 133(c)(A) of such Act (22 U.S.C. 9533(c)(A)) (as amended by subsection (a)).

(2) PROVISION FOR EXPANSION OF RESEARCH.—If, as of the date of the enactment of this Act, the Commissioner has established a center for adult literacy in accordance with section 133(c)(A) of the Education Sciences Reform Act of 2002, the Commissioner shall expand the topic of research of such center to include adult education, in accordance with the amendment made by subsection (a).

TITLE IISupporting English Language Acquisition and Adult Education in the Workforce

SEC. 201. Credit for employer provided adult English literacy and basic education programs.

(a) In general.—Subpart D of part IV of subchapter A of chapter 1 of the Internal Revenue Code of 1986 (relating to business related credits) is amended by adding at the end the following:

“SEC. 45Q. Employer-provided adult English literacy and basic education programs.

“(a) In general.—For the purposes of section 38, the credit determined under this section with respect to any employer for the taxable year is an amount equal to 20 percent of qualified education program expenses, or no more than $1,000 per full-time employee participating in the qualified education program.

“(b) Qualified education program expenses.—For purposes of this section—

“(1) IN GENERAL.—The term ‘qualified education program expenses’ means expenses paid or incurred by an employer to make available qualified education to employees of the employer, who are English language learners or have not received a secondary school diploma, or its recognized equivalent, or who lack sufficient mastery of basic educational skills to enable the individuals to function effectively in society.

“(2) QUALIFIED EDUCATION.—The term ‘qualified education’ means adult education and literacy activities provided—

“(A) by an eligible provider which for the fiscal year ending during the employer’s taxable year receives Federal funds under section 231 of the Adult Education and Family Literacy Act for adult education and literacy activities, or

“(B) in curriculum approved by the Department of Education, the Employment and Training Administration of the Department of Labor, or in current use by a Federal agency.

“(3) ELIGIBLE PROVIDER; ADULT EDUCATION AND LITERACY ACTIVITIES.—The terms ‘eligible provider’, and ‘adult education and literacy activities’ shall have the respective meanings given to such terms in section 203 of the Adult Education and Family Literacy Act.

“(4) ENGLISH LANGUAGE LEARNER.—The term ‘English language learner’ shall have the same meaning given to such term in section 9101(25) of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act of 1965.

“(c) Special rules.—For purposes of this section—

“(1) FULL-TIME EMPLOYMENT.—An employee shall be considered full-time if such employee is employed at least 30 hours per week for 25 or more calendar weeks in the taxable year.

“(2) AGGREGATION RULE.—All persons treated as a single employer under subsection (a) or (b) or section 52, or subsection (m) or (o) of section 414, shall be treated as one person.

“(d) Denial of double benefit.—No deduction or credit shall be allowed under any other provision of this chapter for any amount taken into account in determining the credit under this section.

“(e) Election To have credit not apply.—A taxpayer may elect (at such time and in such manner as the Secretary may by regulations prescribe) to have this section not apply for any taxable year.”.

(b) Credit To be part of general business credit.—Subsection (b) of section 38 of such Code (relating to current year business credit) is amended by striking “plus” at the end of paragraph (32), by striking the period at the end of paragraph (33) and inserting “, plus”, and by adding at the end the following new paragraph:

“(34) the adult English literacy and basic education programs credit determined under section 45Q.”.

(c) Clerical amendment.—The table of sections for subpart D of part IV of subchapter A of chapter 1 of the such Code is amended by adding at the end the following new item:


“45O. Employer-provided adult English literacy and basic education programs.”.

(d) Effective date.—The amendments made by this section shall apply to taxable years beginning after December 31, 2008.

TITLE IIIIntegrating and Building Stronger Communities

SEC. 301. Office of Citizenship and Immigrant Integration.

(a) Renaming of the Office of Citizenship and Immigrant Integration.—

(1) IN GENERAL.—The Office of Citizenship within U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement of the Department of Homeland Security shall be renamed the “Office of Citizenship and Immigrant Integration”.

(2) CONFORMING AMENDMENT.—Subsection (f) of section 451 of the Homeland Security Act of 2002 (6 U.S.C. 271) is amended—

(A) in the heading, by striking “Citizenship.” and inserting “Citizenship and Immigrant Integration.”;

(B) in paragraph (1), by inserting “and Immigrant Integration” after “Office of Citizenship”; and

(C) in paragraph (2), by inserting “and Immigrant Integration” after “Office of Citizenship”.

(3) REFERENCES.—Any reference in a law, regulation, document, paper, or other record of the United States to the Office of Citizenship within U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement of the Department of Homeland Security shall be deemed to be a reference to the “Office of Citizenship and Immigrant Integration”.

(b) Functions.—Paragraph (2) of section 451(f) of the Homeland Security Act of 2002 (6 U.S.C. 271(f)), as amended by subsection (a)(2)(C), is further amended by striking “for promoting” and all that follows through the end and inserting “for—

“(A) establishing national goals for integrating new communities into the United States and measuring the degree to which such goals are met;

“(B) assessing and coordinating Federal policies, regulations, task forces, and commissions related to integration of immigrants into the United States;

“(C) serving as a liaison and intermediary with State and local governments and other entities to assist in establishing local integration goals, task forces, and integration councils to assist immigrants to the United States;

“(D) providing research on, and policy analysis of, the demand for English acquisition programs carried out by the Federal Government and for other services for aliens who have recently arrived in the United States;

“(E) assisting States in coordinating alien integration and refugee resettlement programs with the grant program carried out under title III of the Strengthening Communities Through English and Integration Act of 2008; and

“(F) promoting instruction and training on citizenship responsibilities for aliens interested in becoming naturalized citizens of the United States, including the development of educational materials for such aliens.”.

SEC. 302. Grants to States.

(a) Authority To provide grants.—Subject to subsections (c) and (d), the Chief of the Office of Citizenship and Immigrant Integration is authorized to provide grants to States to form State New American Councils as described in subsection (b) to carry out activities described in section 303.

(b) State New American Councils.—A State New American Council shall consist of not less than 15 and not more than 19 individuals from the State and shall include, to the extent practicable, representatives from the following sectors:

(1) Business.

(2) Faith-based organizations.

(3) Civic organizations.

(4) Philanthropic leaders.

(5) Nonprofit organizations with experience working with immigrant communities.

(6) Education organizations, including organizations representing teachers and other employees.

(7) Representatives of State adult education offices.

(8) Representatives of State or local public libraries.

(9) Representatives of statewide or local elected office holders.

(c) Waiver of requirement.—

(1) AUTHORITY TO GRANT.—The Chief of the Office of Citizenship and Immigrant Integration may award a grant under subsection (a) to a State without requiring the State to form a State New American Council if the Chief determines that the State is carrying out statewide initiatives to integrate immigrants into the State and into the United States.

(2) GUIDELINES.—The Chief shall establish guidelines for awarding grants to States described in paragraph (1).

(d) Grants to local governments.—The Chief of the Office of Citizenship and Immigrant Integration may provide a grant under subsection (a) to a local government if the Chief determines that the State in which the local government is located is unable or unwilling to apply for such a grant.

(e) Application.—An applicant for a grant under subsection (a) shall submit an application to the Chief of the Office of Citizenship and Immigrant Integration. Such application shall include—

(1) if the applicant is a State seeking to form a State New American Council, an assurance that such State New American Council will meet the requirements of subsection (b);

(2) the number of immigrants in the State in which the applicant is located;

(3) a description of the challenges immigrants face in effectively integrating into such State and local communities; and

(4) any other information that the Chief may reasonably require.

(f) Duration.—A grant awarded under subsection (a) shall be for a period of 5 years.

(g) Grant amount.—The amount of a grant awarded under subsection (a) shall be not less than $500,000 and not more than $5,000,000 for each fiscal year.

(h) Reservations.—

(1) NATIONAL.—The Chief of the Office of Citizenship and Immigrant Integration shall reserve not more than 1 percent of the amount appropriated to carry out this title for such Office, including the evaluation of funds distributed.

(2) STATES.—A State awarded a grant under subsection (a) may reserve not more than 10 percent of such grant amount for the creation and operation of the State New American Council.

SEC. 303. Authorized activities.

(a) Mandatory activities.—A grant awarded under section 302(a) shall be used—

(1) to develop, implement, expand, or enhance a comprehensive integration plan;

(2) to provide subgrants to local communities as described in subsection (c);

(3) if the grant is awarded to a State to form a State New American Council, to convene meetings of the State New American Council not less frequently than once each quarter; and

(4) to convene public hearings not less frequently than once each year to report on the activities carried out by with such grant.

(b) Permissible activities.—A grant awarded under section 302(a) may be used—

(1) to examine the status of immigrants in the State or municipality which was awarded the grant;

(2) to provide technical assistance or training for State or local agencies to improve services to immigrants;

(3) to review and develop strategies to expand distance learning as a method of instruction for language and civics education and available technological programs that may supplement or supplant quality classroom instruction; and

(4) to coordinate with entities of other States engaged in immigrant integration or refugee resettlement activities.

(c) Subgrants to local communities.—

(1) REQUIREMENT TO AWARD.—A grant under section 302(a) shall be used to award subgrants to entities of local governments to assist communities with local efforts to integrate populations of immigrants and address community concerns related to such populations.

(2) AUTHORIZED ACTIVITIES.—Subgrants shall be awarded under paragraph (1) to entities of local governments for use to carry out activities in accordance with—

(A) a comprehensive integration plan described in subsection (a)(1); and

(B) any guidance provided by the Chief of the Office of Citizenship and Immigrant Integration.

(3) SUBGRANT AMOUNT.—The amount of a subgrant awarded under this subsection shall be not less than $100,000 and not more than $600,000 for a fiscal year.

SEC. 304. Accountability and evaluation.

(a) Accountability system.—Each entity awarded a grant under section 302(a) or a subgrant under section 303(c) shall establish an accountability system to measure the outcomes of the activities carried out with such grant or subgrant and assess the effectiveness of such entity in achieving the integration goals of—

(1) the Chief of the Office of Citizenship and Immigrant Integration; and

(2) any applicable comprehensive integration plan described in subsection 303(a)(1).

(b) System requirements.—The accountability system required by subsection (a) shall consist of methods to measure the success of activities carried out with a grant awarded under section 302(a) or a subgrant awarded under section 303(c) in producing—

(1) gains in the integration of immigrants into the United States, including increases—

(A) in the understanding of the history and form of government of the United States and of the responsibilities of United States citizenship;

(B) in obtaining the skills needed to meet the requirements of section 312(a) of the Immigration and Nationality Act (8 U.S.C. 1423(a));

(C) in the participation of such immigrants in volunteer or other community involvement activities; and

(D) in the participation of such immigrants who are parents in education of their children;

(2) gains in the education levels of immigrants to the United States, including increases in—

(A) the English language proficiency of such immigrants;

(B) the literacy skills of such immigrants; and

(C) the rates of such immigrants in obtaining a high school diploma or its recognized equivalent; or

(3) gains in the employment status of immigrants to the United States, including increases in—

(A) the level of job skills of such immigrants, including workplace English; and

(B) the ability of such immigrants to obtain and retain full-time employment.

(c) Annual evaluation.—The Chief of the Office of Citizenship and Immigrant Integration shall conduct an annual evaluation of the grant program established under this title. Such evaluation shall be used by the Chief—

(1) to improve the effectiveness of programs carried out by the Chief;

(2) to assess future needs of immigrants and of State and local governments related to immigrants; and

(3) to determine the effectiveness of such grant program.

SEC. 305. Authorization of appropriations.

There are authorized to be appropriated $100,000,000 for each of fiscal years 2009 through 2014 to carry out this title.