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March 3, 2009

Re:      Federal Stimulus Act U.S. Department of Labor Programs and Opportunities

Dear Mayor:

Thanks to NLC’s Neil Bomberg, we are pleased to share with you information about the U.S. Department of Labor's web site on the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act. 

Though not yet complete, the web page that appears at http://www.dol.gov/recovery/ includes a wide range of information that is important to local economic stimulus activities.  Included is a link to "Implementing the Recovery Act" and planned links to "Information about DOL programs funded by the Recovery Act" and "DOL plans and reports."

The Department of Labor programs funded through the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act represent a critical part of the effort to ensure that individuals and families are able to sustain themselves during periods of unemployment and to find new jobs.  As we have reported, the Act would add $39 billion to the federal unemployment fund to ensure that unemployed individuals will be able to continue to receive their benefits; $4 billion to ensure that disadvantaged adults and youth and unemployed workers have access to job training and job match services (including $1.2 billion for 1 million summer jobs for youth); and $29 billion for COBRA so that monthly premiums for unemployed individuals may be reduced by 65 percent.  The link "Implementing the Recovery Act" provides information on:

  1. The Workforce Investment Act (WIA) and how to use the nearly $4 billion in WIA stimulus funds for disadvantaged adult, youth and dislocated worker training programs;
  2. Employment service grants to states;
  3. Unemployment Insurance (UI) benefits for unemployed workers;
  4. Rules governing the suspension of income taxes on unemployment benefits; and
  5. COBRA coverage continuation and expansion.

The information provided at the Department of Labor's web site will help your municipality ensure that individuals within your community have access to the most current unemployment insurance and COBRA information, and enable you to ensure that your local Workforce Investment Act programs are meeting your citizens' needs and the goals and objectives of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act.

Very truly yours,

William G. Dressel, Jr.

Executive Director

 

 

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