U.S. DEPARTMENT OF LABOR
Employment and Training Administration
Washington, D. C. 20210
January 26, 1994
|DIRECTIVE||:||TRAINING AND EMPLOYMENT INFORMATION NOTICE NO. 28-93|
|TO||:||ALL STATE JTPA LIAISONS
ALL STATE WAGNER PEYSER ADMINISTERING AGENCIES
ALL STATE WORKER ADJUSTMENT LIAISONS
|FROM||:||BARBARA ANN FARMER
for Regional Management
|SUBJECT||:||Wage and Length of Participation Limitations in Title III-funded Disaster-Related Projects|
Purpose. To inform States of a change in administrative policy with respect to disaster-related projects with a temporary jobs creation component funded under Title III of the Job Training Partnership Act (JTPA).
References. The Job Training Partnership Act (JTPA), Title III, Part B, Sections 323(a)(1) and (b), 324(a)(2) and (4); and Title IV, Part J, Section 499B(c). National reserve grant Application Procedures for Emergency Dislocated Worker Projects as published in the July 9, 1992 FEDERAL REGISTER (pp 30554-30558).
Background. Under Sections 323 and 324 of Title III of the JTPA, the Secretary is provided limited authority to approve temporary jobs creation demonstration programs to respond to natural disasters. The Secretary has exercised this limited authority for the allowance of demonstration projects, developed specifically for providing immediate services to natural disaster emergencies which contain a temporary job creation component.
The Title III reserve account funds provided to States and substate grantees on an emergency basis are specifically earmarked to give priority services, including temporary employment, to workers who lose their jobs due to the disaster. These temporary jobs are permitted to assist in the immediate clean-up, repair and restoration of public facilities as a result of damage caused by the disaster. A usual and acceptable sequence of activities under the emergency grants is the immediate establishment of a temporary jobs component followed in some circumstances by a retraining component and culminating in the acquisition of unsubsidized employment by the participant.
The limitations on participation in these temporary jobs of six months and a total wage limit of $6,000 per participant were established so that the Department could permit the operation of a temporary job creation component within the Act without exceeding the Secretary's limited authority as prescribed under the Act.
Policies implemented by the Department with respect to these temporary jobs were established several years ago. A number of States have requested that the Department review these policies to determine whether such policies are reasonable and consistent with existing statutory requirements and other current relevant and related policies.
In response to these requests, the Department has reviewed its policies related to emergency grants awarded to respond to natural disasters. As a result of its review, the Department is confirming or revising appropriate policies as indicated in Section 4.
Six-month Limitation: The amendments to the JTPA legislation, published December 29, 1992, in the Federal Register, provides for projects for disaster-related assistance and includes a statutory limitation of 6 months per individual for project participation. Therefore, in keeping with the provisions of the legislative amendments, the 6 month participation limitation will remain in effect.
The six-month participation may be calculated based on a maximum of 1,040 hours, if the temporary worker is working less than 40 hours per week. In addition, the six-month limitation does not take into account any overtime during the six-month period which is authorized for other workers for the same employing entity.
Wage Limitation: The wage limitation is an administrative policy based on wage levels, including the prevailing wage levels for the kinds of skilled occupations employed in clean-up and restoration activities. Wage levels for eligible participants shall not exceed the local wage level paid to a regularly employed individual for the type of work being performed. It is expected that in most instances, entry level wages will be paid. Given the increases in the wage levels in recent years, the Department is herewith establishing a new limitation of up to $12,000 per participant that will be granted on a project by project basis. The Secretary reserves the right to establish the wage limitation at a lower level, where the prevailing wage levels in the community do not warrant the higher limitation.
Where a lower limitation has been established in the grant award letter, approval of a higher limitation may be issued by the Grant Officer upon submittal and review of sufficient documentation to support a higher limitation.
For those participants who were terminated from a temporary job prior to the six-month participation limitation because of the $6,000 earnings limitation, they may be rehired by the State and permitted to work up to the new earnings limitation or the six-month maximum participation limitation, which ever comes first. The six-month limitation will apply to the total number of hours worked by any individual, regardless of an interruption in actual calendar months worked.
Action Required. Any State presently operating an emergency dislocated worker project temporary job component may apply to the Grant Officer for authority to increase out of its existing grant budget the present earnings limitation of $6,000 per participant as indicated above. This must be submitted in the form of a grant amendment request. The State will be informed as expeditiously as possible of the decision on its request.
The State should annotate the July 9, 1992, application procedures accordingly to indicate this change.
Inquiries. Questions should be addressed to Robert N. Colombo, Director, Office of Worker Retraining and Adjustment Programs at (202) 219-5577.