Senate Bill 1420 – Department of Labor

Fred Birnbaum 2020 Idaho Spending Index Leave a Comment

When this agency’s request came up for FY20, we noted the following last year:

This appropriation adds a major new line item, a JOBCorps pilot project with an appropriation of $4.3 million. This appropriation is a federal grant, with 100 percent of the appropriation provided by the federal government and therein lies the concern. 

Page 5-46 of the FY20 Legislative Budget Book (LBB), provides a detailed description of how this federal grant will be used to provide funding to “colleges around the state (initially designated for the College of Western Idaho) for education, training services, guidance, counseling, and other services and support to residential students.”

The description in the LBB, describes this funding as the first installment of a three-year pilot project. A major concern is that once we accept this money, will the colleges turn to the state and ask for general funds after the grant runs out?  They will have added staff and other resources.
The request for FY21 is $6.2 million, up about 44% from FY20.

Finally it should be noted that there are currently more job openings in Idaho that unemployed people; this program is ill-timed.