The Workforce Investment Act of 1998
After several years of deliberation, the United States Congress passed and President Clinton signed into law the Workforce Investment Act of 1998 (WIA) [Public Law 105-220]. It provides the framework for a national employment and training delivery system that is designed to be customer focused in meeting the needs of businesses for skilled workers, while assisting individuals with information and services needed to manage their careers. WIA represents the first significant attempt to retool the nation’s workforce development programs since the early 1980s. The Act consolidated and streamlined over 70 federal employment and training programs into one system. It was implemented though out the nation on July 1, 2000.
The goals of WIA are to:
The legislation embodies seven key principles:
The Governor of each state had to designate their local workforce areas. The Tennessee Career Center System was implemented inTennessee on July 1, 2000 and thirteen (13) Local Workforce Investment Areas were designated. Each local area has a private sector dominated Board (Workforce Investment Board –WIB). The Workforce Investment Board, in consultation with the Local Elected Official, provides guidance for the Career Center System.
The System is designed to provide 75% ofTennessee’s citizens access to free, comprehensive employment related services at a facility with 25 miles of their home. The other 25 % can access services from Affiliate sites.
The Tennessee Career System is comprised of three types of facilities: regionalComprehensiveCareerCenters, Affiliate Sites and local Tennessee Department of Labor and Workforce Development (TDOL&WD) local offices.
The regional labor market in Southeast Tennessee has been designated Local Workforce Investment Area # 5 and includes the following counties:
The Administrative Entity that disburses funds for workforce investment activities at the direction of the Local Workforce Investment Board with the concurrence of the Local Chief Elected Official is –The Southeast Tennessee Development District.
To deliver services across a vast geographical area, a comprehensive network of One Stop Career Centers has been developed. In eachCareerCenterlocation, a number of different training, education and employment programs are unified to provide more customer friendly service to business and to job seekers. Partner unification occurs through co-location or accommodation through established systems of referral.
The Local Workforce Investment Board
The Local Board is responsible for developing the Local Plan and conducting oversight of the One-Stop system, youth activities and employment and training activities in partnership with the chief elected official. The Local Board is also responsible for the following:
The Youth Council is a subgroup of the Local Workforce Investment Board. It is responsible for the following: