SENATE BILL REPORT
This analysis was prepared by non-partisan legislative staff for the use of legislative members in their deliberations. This analysis is not a part of the legislation nor does it constitute a statement of legislative intent.
As Reported by Senate Committee On:
Transportation, February 27, 2012
Title: An act relating to transportation workforce development.
Brief Description: Addressing transportation workforce development.
Sponsors: House Committee on Transportation (originally sponsored by Representatives Clibborn, Hunt, Liias, Kenney, Lytton, Green, Probst, Goodman, Dickerson, Ryu, Seaquist, Darneille, Cody, Carlyle, Sullivan, Kirby, Ormsby, Ladenburg, Moscoso, Springer, Hasegawa, Maxwell, Wylie, Tharinger and Pollet).
Brief History: Passed House: 2/13/12, 56-40.
Committee Activity: Transportation: 2/23/12, 2/27/12 [DPA, DNP].
SENATE COMMITTEE ON TRANSPORTATION
Majority Report: Do pass as amended.
Signed by Senators Haugen, Chair; Eide, Vice Chair; King, Ranking Minority Member; Fain, Assistant Ranking Minority Member; Frockt, Hill, Hobbs, Litzow, Ranker, Rolfes, Sheldon, Shin and Swecker.
Minority Report: Do not pass.
Signed by Senators Delvin and Ericksen.
Staff: Clint McCarthy (786-7319)
Background: The Federal Highway Administration On-the-Job Training (OJT) program is established in federal law. It requires that state transportation agencies receiving certain federal funds establish apprenticeship and training programs aimed at increasing the number of women, minorities, and disadvantaged individuals in journey-level highway construction positions. The stated goal is to ensure a competent workforce to meet highway construction hiring needs and to address the historical under-representation of these groups in highway construction skilled crafts.
Summary of Bill (Recommended Amendments): DOT must expend federal funds received under the federal OJT Program to increase diversity in the highway construction workforce and prepare individuals interested in entering the highway construction workforce. The apportionment of federal funds that goes towards local governments is exempt from having to spend funds for this purpose. DOT must coordinate with the Washington State Apprenticeship and Training Council (Council) to provide any portion of the following services:
preapprenticeship programs approved by the Council;
orientations on the highway construction industry, including outreach to women, minorities, and other disadvantaged individuals;
basic skills improvement classes;
entry requirements for training programs;
supportive services and assistance with transportation;
child care and special needs;
job-site mentoring and retention services; and
assistance with tools, protective clothing, and other related support for employment costs.
DOT may, in coordination with the Council, expend monies from other sources to provide these activities.
DOT, in coordination with the Council, must submit a report to the transportation committees of the Legislature by December 1 of each year, beginning in 2012. The report must contain:
an analysis of the results of providing these services;
the amount available to the DOT from federal funds for the services and the amount expended for those services; and
the performance outcomes achieved from each activity, including the number of persons receiving services, training, and employment.
EFFECT OF CHANGES MADE BY TRANSPORTATION COMMITTEE (Recommended Amendments):
Requires DOT to expend federal funds received under the Federal Surface Transportation Program to increase diversity in the state highway workforce.
Removes the requirement for DOT to expend one-half of 1 percent of the state's apportionment of Federal Surface Transportation Program and Highway Bridge Replacement and Rehabilitation Program funds to provide services to increase diversity in the highway construction workforce.
Exempts federal funding for local governments from the requirement.
Fiscal Note: Available.
Committee/Commission/Task Force Created: No.
Effective Date: Ninety days after adjournment of session in which bill is passed.
Staff Summary of Public Testimony as Heard in Committee: PRO: The program can be successful throughout Washington State, not just Seattle. Encourages more people to complete apprenticeships. Recruiting women and minorities is important for the construction industry moving forward. Would combat retention rates for women and minorities, which tend to be lower than those of white males. Washington State ranks 31st in the nation for percentage of construction workforce that are women. Washington State is a pioneer in opening up apprenticeship programs to minorities.
CON: Supported the original language that didn't mandate funding to be spent on apprenticeship programs. Over 1 million hours of apprenticeship work that is done on DOT projects. Mandate makes it unacceptable.
OTHER: DOT is concerned that funding will be diverted from projects to apprenticeship programs. Wants to ensure investments are the highest and best use of resources. Counties are concerned that it would reduce federal funds that are distributed to cities and counties.
Persons Testifying: PRO: Peter Lahmann, WA State Apprenticeship Coordination Assn.; Adriana Gamboa, Construction Industry Training Council; Heather Winfry, Apprenticeship and Non-Trad for Women; Terry Tilton, WA State Building and Construction Trades Council; Randy Loomans, International Union of Operating Engineers Local 302; Susan Crane; Tamara St. Paul, Apprenticeship Operations 302 & 612.
CON: Duke Schwab, Assn. of General Contractors.
OTHER: Steve Reinmuth, WSDOT; Gary Rowe, WAState Assn. of County Engineers.