Economy and Jobs

We all know that the current economic climate has taken a toll on many families across the nation and that the economy has been slow to recover from the deep recession. Congressman Scott believes the best long-term way we can create jobs and get people back to work is investing in education and training, beginning with early education and continuing through college or vocational education, as well as adult education and training.  A well-educated workforce is more important today than ever before. With the rapid development of this global marketplace, the United States is no longer the single dominant country in the world and American's competitive advantage is a well educated workforce.

Large and targeted investments in workforce development are long overdue and it is time that they are addressed in Washington. Congress recently seized upon the opportunity to do this through reuathoization of the Workforce Investment Act (WIA), which expired in 2003. WIA is the main federal legislation that coordinates federal workforce development programs. Congressman Scott supported the reauthorization of WIA through the Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act, which included an enhanced definition of “individuals with barriers to employment” that explicitly includes older workers over the age of 55 as well the long-term unemployed.  This explicit inclusion means that state and local workforce plans must include goals and strategies for serving these and other disenfranchised groups.  Additionally, the new law requires that 75% of youth funding in the bill support out-of-school youth, sometimes referred to as "opportunity youth" for the opportunites they represent for their communities.  When kids drop out of school they are much more likely to get into trouble and commit crimes.  And once a juvenile falls off of the right track, he or she will face a range of problems and taxpayers will be on the hook for the cost of incarcerating these individuals.   By investing in opportunity youth, Congressman Scott believes that we are investing money on the front end so we don't end up footing the bill later on.  

Many believe that during these tough fiscal times we cannot afford to invest in job creation. But Congressman Scott believes that the choice is clear - we must invest in education and job training so that we have a strong workforce and strong nation for future generations. We can choose to put funding towards direct job creation programs, such as transportation and infrastructure projects. This will help accelerate our recovery, putting millions back to work, and gradually return our budget to balance over the next decade, all without jeopardizing Social Security or Medicare or other important social safety net programs. As Chairman of the Committee on Education and Labor, Congressman Scott is the lead sponsor in the House of Representatives of the Raise the Wage Act, which would gradually raise the minimum wage to $15 by 2024. This bill would be good for workers, business and the economy. 

More on Economy and Jobs

June 16, 2021 Press Release
WASHINGTON, D.C. – Congressman Bobby Scott (VA-03) issued the following statement after the House of Representatives passed S. 475 the Juneteenth National Independence Day Act: “I was very proud to vote today to finally establish Juneteenth as a national holiday and I was pleased to see broad bipartisan support for the legislation. I look forward to President Biden signing it in to law. This vote comes after the Commonwealth of Virginia formally recognized Juneteenth as a holiday last year and now a total of 49 states and Washington, D.C. now celebrate Juneteenth as a state or ceremonial holiday.
June 13, 2021 In The News
As Congress gears up to battle over how much to spend on infrastructure, Rep. Robert C. “Bobby” Scott, D-Newport News, wants to be sure his Capitol Hill colleagues remember one part of the foundation that keeps an economy growing: Child care. “If we’re going to get all these jobs, people need the things that make it possible to work, and that’s child care,” he told staff at the Downtown Hampton Child Development Center. The pandemic hit child-care facilities hard, he said. Those that remained open faced big bills to arrange for social distancing and hygiene measures — and had to spend that money as parents, stuck at home, decided to keep their children home too. Many simply closed their doors, and face bills to prepare for reopening.
June 4, 2021 Press Release
WASHINGTON, DC – Chairman Robert C. “Bobby” Scott (VA-03) released the following statement after the Bureau of Labor Statistics announced that the economy added 559,000 jobs in May with the unemployment rate at 5.8 percent. “Today’s job report shows that the Biden-Harris economic plan is working and, if fully implemented, will produce a strong, shared recovery that benefits all Americans. The American Rescue Plan provided immediate relief to students, workers, families, and businesses and delivered the resources necessary to defeat the pandemic. But today’s report also shows that we still have a long road ahead to make up for the millions of jobs lost over the past 16 months.
May 28, 2021 Press Release
WASHINGTON, DC – Chairman Robert C. “Bobby” Scott (VA-03) released the following statement in response to the release of President Biden’s FY 2022 budget proposal. “The Biden-Harris FY 2022 budget is a blueprint for expanding opportunity and strengthening our economy. It proposes smart, significant investments in education, child care, health care, workforce training, and other key priorities that would improve the lives of Americans across the country.
May 18, 2021 Press Release
WASHINGTON, DC – Chairman Robert C. “Bobby” Scott (VA-03) released the following statement calling for the Occupational Safety and Health Administration to do its job to protect workers from COVID-19. National Nurses United and the United Food and Commercial Workers International Union released statements citing concerns with the impact of CDC’s new guidance on workers. “One clear lesson from the last 16 months is that the honor system does not protect workers from COVID-19 infections.
May 13, 2021 Press Release
WASHINGTON, DC – Today, House Committee on Education and Labor Chairman Robert C. “Bobby” Scott (VA-03) joined Rep. Raúl M. Grijalva (AZ-03) and 53 other Members of Congress in reintroducing the Fairness for Farm Workers Act to update the nation’s labor laws to ensure farm workers receive fair wages and compensation. The bill amends the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) to end the overtime and minimum wage exemptions for farm workers. Since its passage in 1938, FLSA has excluded farm workers from receiving fair wages.
May 11, 2021 Press Release
WASHINGTON, DC – Today, Congressman Robert C. “Bobby” Scott, the Chairman of the Committee on Education and Labor, announced more than $147 million in emergency funding for colleges, universities, and students in Virginia’s 3rd Congressional District under the American Rescue Plan. The funding will help local institutions cope with the severe financial fallout from the COVID-19 pandemic and continue serving their students safely. At least half of the funding each institution receives will be distributed in the form of emergency cash assistance grants to students who are facing hunger, homelessness, and other hardship.
May 4, 2021 Press Release
WASHINGTON, DC – Today, Education and Labor Committee Chairman Robert C. "Bobby" Scott (D-VA), Rep. Susan Wild (PA-07), and Rep. Susie Lee (NV03) introduced the Direct Creation, Advancement, and Retention of Employment (CARE) Opportunity Act, legislation that invests more than $1 billion over five years in training and increasing opportunities for our nation’s direct care workers. The Direct CARE Opportunity Act aligns with a key piece of the American Jobs Plan, which calls for significant investments to meet the surging demand for home and community-based services
May 3, 2021 Press Release
PORTSMOUTH, VA – Congressman Bobby Scott (VA-03), the Chairman of the House Committee on Education and Labor, issued the following statement after visiting Tidewater Community College with President Joe Biden and First Lady Dr. Jill Biden: “It was as honor to join President Biden and Dr. Biden today at Tidewater Community College (TCC). TCC is an example of the role that community colleges can have in expanding opportunities for our students and creating jobs in local economies. The American Families Plan would allow all Americans to attend community college tuition-free. This bold plan would give all Americans the opportunity the develop the skills they need to find good-paying jobs and rewarding careers.
April 28, 2021 Press Release
WASHINGTON, D.C. – Congressman Bobby Scott (VA-03) issued the following statement after President Biden addressed a Joint Session of Congress: “Tonight, President Biden delivered an optimistic message and outlined a historic plan to build back a better economy. As chair of the Education and Labor Committee, I look forward to advancing legislation that improves our schools, creates millions of new jobs, protects the environment for future generations and strengthens support for families across the country.”