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111th Congress Report
HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES
2d Session 111-453
ENERGY JOBS FOR VETERANS ACT
March 22, 2010.--Committed to the Committee of the Whole House on the
State of the Union and ordered to be printed
Mr. Filner, from the Committee on Veterans' Affairs, submitted the
R E P O R T
[To accompany H.R. 4592]
[Including cost estimate of the Congressional Budget Office]
The Committee on Veterans' Affairs, to whom was referred
the bill (H.R. 4592) to provide for the establishment of a
pilot program to encourage the employment of veterans in
energy-related positions, having considered the same, report
favorably thereon with an amendment and recommend that the bill
as amended do pass.
Purpose and Summary.............................................. 3
Background and Need for Legislation.............................. 3
Subcommittee Consideration....................................... 5
Committee Consideration.......................................... 5
Committee Votes.................................................. 5
Committee Oversight Findings..................................... 6
Statement of General Performance Goals and Objectives............ 6
New Budget Authority, Entitlement Authority, and Tax Expenditures 6
Earmarks and Tax and Tariff Benefits............................. 6
Committee Cost Estimate.......................................... 6
Congressional Budget Office Estimate............................. 6
Federal Mandates Statement....................................... 7
Advisory Committee Statement..................................... 8
Constitutional Authority Statement............................... 8
Applicability to Legislative Branch.............................. 8
Section-by-Section Analysis of the Legislation................... 8
The amendment is as follows:
Strike all after the enacting clause and insert the
SECTION 1. SHORT TITLE.
This Act may be referred to as the ``Energy Jobs for Veterans Act''.
SEC. 2. VETERANS ENERGY-RELATED EMPLOYMENT PROGRAM.
(a) Establishment of Pilot Program.--To encourage the employment of
eligible veterans in the energy industry, the Secretary of Labor, as
part of the Veteran's Workforce Investment Program, shall carry out a
pilot program to be known as the ``Veterans Energy-Related Employment
Program''. Under the pilot program, the Secretary shall award
competitive grants to three States for the establishment and
administration of a State program to make grants to energy employers
and labor-management organizations that provide covered training, on-
job training, apprenticeships, and certification classes to eligible
veterans. Such a program shall be known as a ``State Energy-Related
(b) Eligibility for Grants.--To be eligible to receive a grant under
the pilot program, a State shall submit to the Secretary an application
that includes each of the following:
(1) A proposal for the expenditure of grant funds to
establish and administer a public-private partnership program
designed to provide covered training, on-job training,
apprenticeships, and certification classes to a significant
number of eligible veterans and ensure lasting and sustainable
employment in well-paying jobs in the energy industry.
(2) Evidence that the State has--
(A) a population of eligible veterans of an
appropriate size to carry out the State program;
(B) a robust and diverse energy industry; and
(C) the ability to carry out the State program
described in the proposal under paragraph (1).
(3) Such other information and assurances as the Secretary
(c) Use of Funds.--A State that is the recipient of a grant under
this section shall use the grant for the following purposes:
(1) Making grants to energy employers and labor-management
organizations to reimburse such employers and organizations for
the cost of providing covered training, on-job training,
apprenticeships, and certification classes to eligible
(2) Conducting outreach to inform energy employers, labor-
management organizations, and veterans, including veterans in
rural areas, of their eligibility or potential eligibility for
participation in the State program.
(d) Conditions.--Under the pilot program, each grant to a State shall
be subject to the following conditions:
(1) The State shall repay to the Secretary, on such date as
shall be determined by the Secretary, any amount received under
the pilot program that is not used for the purposes described
in subsection (c).
(2) The State shall submit to the Secretary, at such times
and containing such information as the Secretary shall require,
reports on the use of grant funds.
(e) Employer Requirements.--In order to receive a grant made by a
State under the pilot program, an energy employer shall--
(1) submit to the administrator of the State Energy-Related
Employment Program an application that includes--
(A) the rate of pay for each eligible veteran
proposed to be trained using grant funds;
(B) the average rate of pay for an individual
employed by the energy employer in a similar position
who is not an eligible veteran; and
(C) such other information and assurances as the
administrator may require; and
(2) agree to submit to the administrator, for each quarter, a
report containing such information as the Secretary may
(f) Limitation.--None of the funds made available to an energy
employer through a grant under the pilot program may be used to provide
training of any kind to a person who is not an eligible veteran.
(g) Report to Congress.--Together with the report required to be
submitted annually under section 4107(c) of title 38, United States
Code, the Secretary shall submit to Congress a report on the pilot
program for the year covered by such report. The report on the pilot
program shall include a detailed description of activities carried out
under this section and an evaluation of the program.
(h) Administrative and Reporting Costs.--Of the amounts appropriated
pursuant to the authorization of appropriations under subsection (j),
two percent shall be made available to the Secretary for administrative
costs associated with implementing and evaluating the pilot program
under this section and for preparing and submitting the report required
under subsection (f). The Secretary shall determine the appropriate
maximum amount of each grant awarded under this section that may be
used by the recipient for administrative and reporting costs.
(i) Definitions.--For purposes of this section:
(1) The term ``covered training, on-job training,
apprenticeships, and certification classes'' means training,
on-job training, apprenticeships, and certification classes
(A) designed to provide the veteran with skills that
are particular to an energy industry and not directly
transferable to employment in another industry; and
(B) approved as provided in paragraph (1) or (2), as
appropriate, of subsection (a) of section 3687 of title
38, United States Code.
(2) The term ``eligible veteran'' means a veteran, as that
term is defined in section 101(3) of title 38, United States
Code, who is employed by an energy employer and enrolled or
participating in a covered training, on-job training,
apprenticeship, or certification class.
(3) The term ``energy employer'' means an entity that employs
individuals in a trade or business in an energy industry.
(4) The term ``energy industry'' means any of the following
(A) The energy-efficient building, construction, or
(B) The renewable electric power industry, including
the wind and solar energy industries.
(C) The biofuels industry.
(D) The energy efficiency assessment industry that
serves the residential, commercial, or industrial
(E) The oil and natural gas industry.
(F) The nuclear industry.
(j) Appropriations.--There is authorized to be appropriated to the
Secretary $10,000,000 for each of fiscal years 2011 through 2015, for
the purpose of carrying out the pilot program.
PURPOSE AND SUMMARY
H.R. 4592 was introduced on February 3, 2010, by
Representative Harry Teague of New Mexico. H.R. 4592, as
amended, would create a pilot program within the U.S.
Department of Labor (DOL) to provide competitive grants for up
to three States to encourage the hiring and training of
military veterans in the energy industry.
BACKGROUND AND NEED FOR LEGISLATION
A recent survey of veterans' unemployment by the DOL shows
that the number of unemployed Iraq and Afghanistan veterans is
now almost the same as the number of servicemembers currently
deployed in support of those two wars. When the United States
unemployment rate hit 9.7 percent last fall, veterans of the
Iraq and Afghanistan wars were unemployed at a rate of 11.3
percent. Furthermore, from 2008 to 2009, the unemployment rate
for young Iraq and Afghanistan veterans between the ages of 18
to 24, jumped seven points and hit 21.1 percent, as compared to
16.6 percent for the rest of the nation. Moreover, veterans'
unemployment in general has increased to 9.5 percent with over
one million veterans seeking work. Among that number there are
246,000 between the ages of 18 and 34. Another 739,000 are
between the ages of 35 and 64 or about 75 percent of unemployed
Additionally, energy employers have indicated a need to tap
into a market of skilled, trained workers that does not always
exist. Large scale investments in renewable energy, nuclear
energy, natural gas, and energy efficiency, among other energy
technologies, mean that a trained and skilled workforce must be
developed quickly. Veterans are technically proficient, hard
working and disciplined, and can provide an excellent source of
talented employees to meet the energy industry's needs.
Recognizing the need to fill the need of a growing industry
with a professional workforce, and to combat the problem of
unemployment among those who served our nation in uniform,
Representative Harry Teague introduced H.R. 4592 to encourage
energy employers to hire veterans. The bill establishes a
competitive grant program in which up to three states could be
selected to fund incentives for energy employers to hire
veterans. The selected states would reimburse employers for the
cost of training and apprenticeship needed to qualify the
veteran for the job. The program legislated by the bill is
different than other Federal employment programs, including
others aimed at veterans, because it would ensure that a
veteran has secured sustainable employment before the State
reimburses the employer for the training. The employer benefits
because he or she has the opportunity to hire a veteran and
provide training and apprenticeship without incurring cost. The
veteran benefits because employers are provided a further
incentive to hire him or her for a position that might
otherwise go to a non-veteran and because the employer is
required to offer training and work experience that ensures
sustainable employment for the veteran.
Entities eligible for funding through H.R. 4592 would
include employers and labor-management organizations involved
in the energy efficient building, construction and retrofits
industries; the renewable electric power industry; the biofuels
industry; the energy efficiency assessment industry; the oil
and gas industry; and, the nuclear industry.
During Subcommittee consideration of the bill as
introduced, the Ranking Member of the Subcommittee,
Representative John Boozman of Arkansas, expressed concern that
government funds would be used to artificially create jobs in
the energy industry that were not created by regular market
forces. Mr. Boozman also suggested that instead of paying a
portion of the salary that the language be changed to reimburse
employers that were providing on the job training or
certification. In addition, DOL expressed concern that the bill
language, as introduced, could create a program that was
duplicative of current programs under its authority. DOL
suggested the program be placed under the Veteran's Workforce
Investment Program which already awards grants to train
veterans for green energy jobs and that a portion of the
appropriations be set aside for administration and evaluation
of the program. These concerns were addressed by the
Subcommittee in an amendment to H.R. 4592.
H.R. 4592 is meant to assist those who served their country
in the Armed Forces to be able to continue their work for the
security of our country when they return home--by getting a
job, and a career, producing our energy right here in America.
Energy independence is one of our nation's foremost security
imperatives, and there is no one more suitable for--or capable
of--filling energy jobs in America than our veterans.
On February 25, 2010, the Subcommittee on Economic
Opportunity conducted a legislative hearing on various bills
introduced during the 111th Congress, including H.R. 4592. The
Following witnesses testified: The Honorable John J. Hall of
New York; The Honorable Adam H. Putnam of Florida; The
Honorable Joe Sestak of Pennsylvania; The Honorable Adam Smith
of Washington; The Honorable Michael R. Turner of Ohio; Mr.
Robert W. Madden, Assistant Director, National Economic
Commission, The American Legion; Mr. Justin Brown, Legislative
Associate, National Legislative Service, Veterans of Foreign
Wars; Mr. Timothy S. Embree, Legislative Associate, Iraq and
Afghanistan Veterans of America; Mr. James Bombard, Legislative
Director, National Association of State Approving Agencies; Mr.
Mark E. Sullivan, Law Offices of Mark E. Sullivan, P.A.; Col.
Shawn Shumake, U.S. Army, Director, Office of Legal Policy,
Office of the Under Secretary of Defense (Personnel and
Readiness), Program Integration and Legal Policy, U.S.
Department of Defense; Mr. Keith M. Wilson, Director of
Education Service, Veterans Benefits Administration, U.S.
Department of Veterans Affairs, accompanied by Mr. Mark
Bologna, Director of Loan Guaranty Service, Veteran Benefits
Administration, U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs and Mr. F.
John Brizzi, Jr., Deputy-Assistant General Counsel, U.S.
Department of Veterans Affairs. Those submitting statements for
the record included: The Honorable Bob Filner of California;
The Honorable Ron Klein of Florida; Ms. Patricia E. Apy,
American Bar Association; Ms. Stacy Bannerman of Medford,
Oregon; Ms. Kelly Hruska, Government Relations Deputy Director,
National Military Family Association; Mr. Brian Hawthorne,
Legislative Director, Student Veterans of America; and, the
Pennsylvania Association of Private School Administrators.
On March 4, 2010, the Subcommittee on Economic Opportunity
met in an open markup session and ordered favorably forwarded
to the full Committee H.R. 4592, as amended, by voice vote.
During consideration of the bill the following amendment in the
nature of a substitute was considered:
An amendment in the nature of a substitute by Mr. Harry
Teague of New Mexico to create a ``Veterans Energy Related
Employment Program'' pilot program which would award
competitive grants to three states for the establishment of a
program that would reimburse energy employers for the cost of
providing on-the-job training for veterans in the energy sector
while addressing the concerns highlighted in the February 25,
2010, Subcommittee legislative hearing was agreed to by voice
On March 10, 2010, the full Committee met in an open markup
session, a quorum being present, and ordered H.R. 4592, as
amended, reported favorably to the House of Representatives, by
Clause 3(b) of rule XIII of the Rules of the House of
Representatives requires the Committee to list the record votes
on the motion to report the legislation and amendments thereto.
There were no record votes taken on amendments or in connection
with ordering H.R. 4592 reported to the House. A motion by Mr.
Jeff Miller of Florida to order H.R. 4592, as amended, reported
favorably to the House of Representatives was agreed to by
COMMITTEE OVERSIGHT FINDINGS
In compliance with clause 3(c)(1) of rule XIII and clause
(2)(b)(1) of rule X of the Rules of the House of
Representatives, the Committee's oversight findings and
recommendations are reflected in the descriptive portions of
STATEMENT OF GENERAL PERFORMANCE GOALS AND OBJECTIVES
In accordance with clause 3(c)(4) of rule XIII of the Rules
of the House of Representatives, the Committee's performance
goals and objectives are reflected in the descriptive portions
of this report.
NEW BUDGET AUTHORITY, ENTITLEMENT AUTHORITY, AND TAX EXPENDITURES
In compliance with clause 3(c)(2) of rule XIII of the Rules
of the House of Representatives, the Committee adopts as its
own the estimate of new budget authority, entitlement
authority, or tax expenditures or revenues contained in the
cost estimate prepared by the Director of the Congressional
Budget Office pursuant to section 402 of the Congressional
Budget Act of 1974.
EARMARKS AND TAX AND TARIFF BENEFITS
H.R. 4592 does not contain any congressional earmarks,
limited tax benefits, or limited tariff benefits as defined in
clause 9 of rule XXI of the Rules of the House of
COMMITTEE COST ESTIMATE
The Committee adopts as its own the cost estimate on H.R.
4592 prepared by the Director of the Congressional Budget
Office pursuant to section 402 of the Congressional Budget Act
CONGRESSIONAL BUDGET OFFICE COST ESTIMATE
Pursuant to clause 3(c)(3) of rule XIII of the Rules of the
House of Representatives, the following is the cost estimate
for H.R. 4592 provided by the Congressional Budget Office
pursuant to section 402 of the Congressional Budget Act of
Congressional Budget Office,
Washington, DC, March 12, 2010.
Hon. Bob Filner,
Chairman, Committee on Veterans' Affairs,
House of Representatives, Washington, DC.
Dear Mr. Chairman: The Congressional Budget Office has
prepared the enclosed cost estimate for H.R. 4592, the Energy
Jobs for Veterans Act.
If you wish further details on this estimate, we will be
pleased to provide them. The CBO staff contact is Camille
Douglas W. Elmendorf,
H.R. 4592--Energy Jobs for Veterans Act
Summary: H.R. 4592 would require the Department of Labor
(DoL) to create a pilot program to assist veterans in
qualifying for jobs in the energy sector. The bill would
authorize the appropriation of $50 million over the 2011-2015
period for this program. Assuming appropriation of the
specified amounts, CBO estimates that implementing the
legislation would cost $31 million over the 2011-2015 period.
Enacting the legislation would not affect direct spending
or revenues; therefore pay-as-you-go procedures would not
H.R. 4592 contains no intergovernmental or private-sector
mandates as defined in the Unfunded Mandates Reform Act (UMRA).
Estimated cost to the Federal Government: The estimated
budgetary impact of H.R. 4592 is shown in the following table.
The costs of this legislation fall within budget function 700
(veterans benefits and services).
By fiscal year, in millions of dollars--
2011 2012 2013 2014 2015 2011-2015
CHANGES IN SPENDING SUBJECT TO APPROPRIATION
Authorization Level................................ 10 10 10 10 10 50
Estimated Outlays.................................. 0 3 8 10 10 31
Basis of estimate: Under H.R. 4592, the Department of Labor
would be required to initiate a program that would provide
grants to employers and organizations that provide training,
apprenticeships, and certification classes to prepare veterans
for employment in energy-related fields. To fund the pilot
program, which would be available in three states, the bill
would authorize the appropriation of $10 million a year for
2011 through 2015. Based on historical spending patterns for
similar programs, CBO estimates that implementing H.R. 4592
would cost $31 million over the 2011-2015 period, assuming
appropriation of the authorized amounts.
Pay-as-you-go considerations: None.
Intergovernmental and private-sector impact: H.R. 4592
contains no intergovernmental or private-sector mandates as
defined in UMRA. State, local, and tribal governments that
provide employment assistance to veterans would benefit from
grants authorized in the bill.
Estimate prepared by: Federal Costs: Camille Woodland;
Impact on State, Local, and Tribal Governments: Lisa Ramirez-
Branum; Impact on the Private Sector: Elizabeth Bass.
Estimate approved by: Theresa Gullo, Deputy Assistant
Director for Budget Analysis.
FEDERAL MANDATES STATEMENT
The Committee adopts as its own the estimate of Federal
mandates regarding H.R. 4592 prepared by the Director of the
Congressional Budget Office pursuant to section 423 of the
Unfunded Mandates Reform Act.
ADVISORY COMMITTEE STATEMENT
No advisory committees within the meaning of section 5(b)
of the Federal Advisory Committee Act would be created by H.R.
CONSTITUTIONAL AUTHORITY STATEMENT
Pursuant to clause 3(d)(1) of rule XIII of the Rules of the
House of Representatives, the Committee finds that the
Constitutional authority for H.R. 4592 is provided by Article
I, section 8 of the Constitution of the United States.
APPLICABILITY TO LEGISLATIVE BRANCH
The Committee finds that the legislation does not relate to
the terms and conditions of employment or access to public
services or accommodations within the meaning of section
102(b)(3) of the Congressional Accountability Act.
SECTION-BY-SECTION ANALYSIS OF THE LEGISLATION
Section 1. Short title
This section would provide the short title of H.R. 4592, as
amended, as the ``Energy Jobs for Veterans Act.''
Section 2. Veterans Energy-Related Employment Program
This section would create a ``Veterans Energy Related
Employment Program'' pilot program which would award
competitive grants to three States for the establishment of a
program that would reimburse energy employers for the cost of
providing on-the-job training for veterans in the energy
sector. The reimbursements would go to employers or labor-
This section would require that each participating State
provide evidence that it can produce such training to serve a
population of eligible veterans, has a diverse energy industry,
and the ability to carry out such a program.
This section would authorize the use of grant funds to
provide training to veterans, and conduct outreach to veterans
informing them of the program and require that states submit
proposals that certify that participating veterans would be
hired at a wage rate consistent with the standard industry
average for jobs that are technically involved and have a
skill-set that is not transferable to other non-energy
industries. Grant funds would be limited to veterans and the
Secretary of Labor would be required to submit a report to
Congress on the activities carried out by the program and an
evaluation of the program.
This section would authorize two percent of appropriated
funds to be used for administrative costs and authorize the
Secretary of Labor to determine the maximum amount of each
grant awarded that may be used by the States for administrative
and reporting costs.
This section would authorize to be appropriated $10 million
a year for five years, beginning in 2011 through 2015.