Back to Work Coalition Makes Progress in General Assembly
In addition to advocating on behalf of Northern Virginia Chamber members, our VP of Government Relations Clayton Medford is the point person during session for the Northern Virginia Back to Work Leadership Task Force. This year, Back to Work established a set of priorities for the legislature in line with the group’s goal of support education and workforce policies and programs during the pandemic and subsequent economic recovery. Some of the highlights of Back to Work’s success this year:
Initial funding for the G3 Program: FY2022 Amended Budget includes $38.5 million for the Get a Skill, Get a Job, Give Back program.
Support for Higher Education: the Budget includes strong support for higher education including undergraduate need-based financial aid, affordability funding for George Mason University, and Tuition Assistance Grant program funding.
Tech Talent Investment Program: the Budget includes full FY2022 funding for the Tech Talent Investment Fund.
Funding for the Virginia Employment Commission: while not full modernization of VEC backed by Back to Work, the Budget includes funding for IT upgrades and staffing to improve the delivery of this critical support for unemployed Virginians, without raising taxes from those businesses hardest hit during the pandemic.
Support for Childcare: a bill by Speaker Eileen Filler-Corn temporarily expanding the Childcare Subsidy Program was met with very little resistance in both the House and Senate. The expansion changed the eligibility rules to include families who are searching for work and whose income is less than 85% of Average Median Income (AMI).