Assembly work panel OKs plan to target worker job training for those positions most needed, pay best

June 12, 2013
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Measure would help reduce unemployment

SACRAMENTO – With the goal of preparing today’s workers for skilled, well-paying jobs that are either needed or soon will be, a key California Assembly policy panel today approved a Sen. Ted W. Lieu bill that seeks to help provide the necessary resources to train and better prepare workers.

“Having residents willing to work is one thing, but making sure those residents are trained and ready to do the jobs that are most in need and pay decent wages is something state policy makers must focus on to continue growing California's economy,” Lieu, D-Torrance, said shortly before the Assembly Labor and Employment Committee approved Senate Bill 118.

Lieu’s measure, which passed the Senate April 22 on a bipartisan vote, would direct the California Workforce Investment Board to target job-training resources.

Lieu, chair of the Senate Business, Professions and Economic Development Committee and longtime advocate of more aggressive state efforts to create jobs, including the return of a unified state trade and commerce agency, said California established the California Workforce Investment Board to coordinate education, training and employment programs into an effective system that supports economic development.

Existing law requires that the CWIB, in collaboration with specified state and local partners, develop a strategic workforce plan that’s updated at least every five years and addresses the state’s latest economic, demographic and workplace needs.

SB 118 would help earmark training for our future workforce needs through key requirements that would:

• Establish workforce education and training principles that are coupled with a statewide sector strategy focus for state board activities.
• Mandate the board conduct an annual skills gap analysis identifying those industries facing shortages of skilled workers or sectors with job-growth potential.
• Ensure the state workforce investment plan be organized around the adoption of sector strategies that use the state-level skills-gap analysis as a guide.

SB 118 is supported by numerous education, labor and training groups, including the Torrance Chamber of Commerce; the City of Long Beach; the California Labor Federation; the California Manufacturers and Technology Association; the California Workforce Association; the Jewish Vocational Services of San Francisco; the National Skills Coalition; the State Building and Construction Trades Council; the AFL-CIO; and the Council of California Goodwill Industries.

SB 118 next faces a vote by the Assembly Committee on Jobs, Economic Development and the Economy; no date has yet been set.  
 
For more, including a Fact Sheet on SB 118, please visit Lieu’s Web site at the address below.

Ted W. Lieu chairs the Senate Business, Professions and Economic Development Committee and represents the more than 1.3 million residents of Senate District 28, which includes the cities of Beverly Hills, Carson, El Segundo, Hermosa Beach, Lomita, Manhattan Beach, Redondo Beach, Santa Monica, Torrance, West Hollywood and the Palos Verdes Peninsula as well as portions of Long Beach and Los Angeles including, Beverly Glenn, Brentwood, Cheviot Hills, Harbor City, Hollywood Hills, Marina del Rey, Mar Vista, Pacific Palisades, Playa del Rey, San Pedro, Venice, Westwood and Wilmington. See a district map HERE: For more, visit www.senate.ca.gov/lieu.

 PHOTO: Sen. Lieu at a recent groundbreaking in Santa Monica. Photo by Jennifer Zivkovic.