Public Policy Associate
United Way for Southeastern Michigan
The past two weeks have seen a flurry of activity. Congress worked toward a budget deal that would keep the government running past December 16, and state legislators worked late into the evening on several important pieces of legislation prior to their holiday recess.
You can get the full recap of recent public policy developments related to Education, Income and Basic Needs by clicking here. Below are some highlights:
- Early Childhood Education: The federal Department of Education announced the states that won grants from the Race to the Top – Early Learning Challenge. Michigan applied, but was not selected. Click here for more coverage from MLive. on this issue.
- Federal Budget: Congressional leaders announced that they have reached a deal to pass the final pieces of the federal budget, which funds. Click here for a breakdown of select spending levels in the Chronicle of Philanthropy.
- The state legislature approved a solution to fill in the gap left by the Low-Income Energy Efficiency fund, which can no longer disburse grants for utility assistance and weatherization. They will create a temporary funding source for utility assistance, and begin discussing a long-term solution in early 2012. Click here for coverage in the Detroit News.
- Representatives in Congress introduced two bills as part of reauthorization of the federal Workforce Investment Act, a federal law which funds and structures job training programs. Streamlining Workforce Development Programs Act consolidates 33 training programs, strengthens accountability measures, and reduces administrative inefficiencies; and the Local Job Opportunities and Business Success Act (Local JOBS Act) increases the representation of employers on workforce investment boards, expands the functions of the boards, and relaxes federal mandates.