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  • Senate Investigation Uncovers Waste, Duplication in Job-Training Programs

    Job training programs created by Congress have resulted in overlap and duplication, according to a new report from Sen. Tom Coburn (R-OK) that focuses on workforce development initiatives in Oklahoma.

    Coburn used his home state as a case study for the effectiveness of federal job training efforts. His office found numerous examples of redundancy and complexity.

    The state of Oklahoma maintains 40 different job training programs that are managed by nine state agencies and operated by more than 45 entities across 180 different physical locations. The costs add up to about $164 million a year.

    As a result of the complexity and duplication in workforce development programs, a large share of resources is wasted in administrative costs, the report found.

    The Southeast Workforce Investment Board budgeted only 14 percent of its $1.5 million budget for job training programs. For instance, the board budgeted $66,620 for administrative travel costs, compared to only $40,526 on dislocated workers.

    The report builds on previous findings of inefficiencies in job training programs. The Labor Department inspector general found last year that the Job Corps, another training program, costs $76,574 per successful job placement.

    Despite all of this government investment, the employers who would hire re-trained workers are unfamiliar with and disconnected from the workforce development system. The report found that 64 percent of Oklahoma employers say they are somewhat unfamiliar with the system, and 56 percent of state employers report that contact with system representatives occurs “never” or “seldom.”

    In addition, job training often fails to place students in jobs related to the field in which they were trained. The report found that more than 500 Oklahomans have participated in green-skills training in the past year, but only 133 were placed in training-related employment.

    Green-jobs training under President Obama’s stimulus bill was even less successful. The Labor Department inspector general found last year that, with 61 percent of the training grant periods having lapsed, grantees achieved just 10 percent of their job placement goals.

    Coburn’s report recommends improving job training programs by empowering states to develop and manage their own workforce development systems with less federal interference, making sure money is spent on training instead of administrative costs, consolidating and refocusing federal resources, eliminating programs without metrics, and targeting those truly in need.

    “Taxpayers are spending billions of dollars employing people in job training programs instead of training unemployed workers for jobs. Taxpayers should be appalled Congress has done nothing to reform these programs for more than 18 months,” Coburn said. “The report also shows that states are vastly more capable of managing job training programs than the federal government.”

    Posted in Featured, Scribe [slideshow_deploy]

    8 Responses to Senate Investigation Uncovers Waste, Duplication in Job-Training Programs

    1. fran says:

      this is just in Oklahoma… what a waste of tax dollars to train young people

    2. Lloyd Scallan says:

      Where was Coburn and other Republicans when these "job-training programs" were implemented? Coburn just now recognizes the waste and fraud in this program, as well as all of almost ever program run by Washington? Could it be that this is an election year so the rats are all scrambling for rafts to get off the sinking ship of this Congress? The Democrats are the problem, but they did not do it all without help
      from the other side of the isle.

    3. Norman Linnell says:

      Did we really need another study to prove that all federal programs are dominated by waste , fraud , and duplication ?

    4. Leon Lundquist says:

      The really sad part of Job Training Programs is they don't train for skills that businesses need, rather it is about how to apply for a job or how to write a resume. All this money is wasted 'training' people for skills they already have but nothing practical, like what school failures Businesses have to make up for in On The Job Training, Communications, writing, listening, work ethic, entrepreneurship, discipline and professionalism. Fine, if these Programs imparted marketable skills, but it isn't what the people need nor what the business needs. I'm afraid Government Programs are made to look good but not to actually be good.

      Did you know? Perception is NOT Reality!

    5. Blair Franconia, NH says:

      That's why Reagan repealed CETA after he came into office.

    6. Nancy Stefani says:

      I have been in the so called job training program for two years. I as well as many people in the same program are only being used as volanteers, with no particular training being available. I have applied for hundreds of jobs since being in the program, thinking it is better to be in the program applying, but have only received scam replys. This is a total waste of money. The government has no idea how to create jobs. It has no business in business

    7. Bobbie says:

      the government jobs training programs is make up to the fundamentals that weren't taught in government education! Nothing but government monopoly in every step taken.

      There is absolutely no better training than on the job! Immediate benefit to the business and the hired! No government costs! Skills are learned on the job!! Versatility! Ethics develops when there's accountabilities and ambition builds when challenge is optional! Opposite union jobs! To have to go to government job training for job skills is nonproductive at an expense, costing the mind's potential because government runs on contingencies! Businesses run on accountability!! Get rid of government! We can do it like it's been done!

    8. Mike, Wichita Falls says:

      Job training programs are at least jobs for the paper-pushers!

      Why aren't the heavily-funded public schools, colleges and tech schools enough job training? What is the ROI to the taxpayer for all of this? I agree society benefits from well-educated people, but what is the cost to society?

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