A picture of Representative Renee L. Ellmers
Renee E.
Republican NC 2

About Rep. Renee
  • Providing for Consideration of H.R. 803, Supporting Knowledge and Investing in Lifelong Skills Act

    by Representative Renee L. Ellmers

    Posted on 2013-03-14

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    ELLMERS. Mr. Speaker, thank you to my distinguished colleague from North Carolina, whose passion and longstanding experience in this area have brought this great piece of legislation for us to be able to vote on today.

    And I would just like to rise and say that I am in support of the rule and the underlying bill to the SKILLS Act.

    {time} 1620 Here in Congress we frequently hear from our constituents back home that we need to work with the President on many issues, and this is a perfect example of a piece of legislation that we are working on with President Barack Obama. The SKILLS Act directly addresses what the President recently called ``a maze of confusing training programs.'' This is our chance to come together and create meaningful, commonsense reform that will help struggling Americans pull themselves up out of unemployment and empower them to better provide for their families. It would also create a single Workforce Investment Fund. It basically streamlines numerous ineffective, redundant programs, and it allows for every American to better themselves.

    I can only think of whom this bill actually helps. I can think of the single mother who is working every day and wants to better help her family and have the flexibility to go back to school to our good community colleges in this country, to our technical schools. This bill cuts the red tape that our community colleges and our technical schools now face. And now we can help them. There are so many out there that need this help.

    Mr. Speaker, this idea is not Republican and it is not Democrat. It is common sense. In fact, this bill is largely the same bill that came out of the Education and Workforce Committee last Congress, and most of the Democratic provisions have been retained.

    I am also hearing from constituents back home. For instance, Dr. Larry Keen, president of Fayetteville Technical Community College, recently told my office: [[Page H1411]] I am in favor of the SKILLS Act and the purposes for which it was created. Anything that contributes to the simplification of a very complex system is of value.

    Again, I rise today in support of this. I agree with Dr. Keen. I am here to say that I am calling on my colleagues to step away from this partisan attack and help us pass this bill. Additionally, I hope the Senate will do the same.

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