Workforce Investment Act of 1998

The Workforce Investment Act of 1998 (WIA) reformed federal employment, training, adult education and vocational rehabilitation programs by creating an integrated one-stop system of workforce investment and education services for adults, dislocated workers and youth.

Grandfather Provisions

Beginning in 1993, Texas created a system very similar to the one created by the Workforce Investment Act of 1998. Recognizing that Texas had made significant efforts to improve service delivery through local control and coordination of services from different programs, Congress included a number of grandfathering provisions in WIA, allowing Texas to retain some essential elements of its state training approach.

WIA Grandfather Provisions:

  • Section 111(e)
  • Section 117(i)
  • Section 121(e)
  • Section 189(i)(2)–(3)
  • Section 194(a)(1)(A)–(B)
  • Section 194(a)(2)–(6)

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State Workforce Investment Plan

The Texas Workforce Commission’s Strategic State Workforce Investment Plan includes these three sections:

  • Section I details how the Texas workforce system will accomplish its mission through associated strategies and how Texas’ workforce strategies align with the strategic direction of the Texas Workforce Investment Council.
  • Section II includes responses to detailed operational questions regarding state structure, funding, target populations, and service delivery efforts. This section also includes the Senior Community Service Employment Program State Plan for Program Years 2012–2015, and all applicable waivers.
  • Section III provides a list of assurances affirming that key obligations in the law have been met.

The Commission approved the plan at its September 4, 2012 meeting, and it was endorsed by the Texas Workforce Investment Council at its September 7, 2012 quarterly meeting. The Governor of Texas approved the plan on September 12, 2012.

The U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) approved the plan on December 11, 2012. The portions relating to Title I of WIA, the Wagner-Peyser Act and Trade Adjustment Assistance are approved through June 30, 2017. The annual Wagner-Peyser Agricultural Plan is approved through June 30, 2013. The Senior Community Service Employment Program State Plan is approved through June 30, 2016.

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WIA Annual Reports

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WIA Waivers

WIA provides authority for the Secretary of Labor to waive statutory and regulatory requirements of WIA and the Wagner-Peyser Act. TWC has sought and received waivers from DOL regarding certain WIA requirements. The intent of the waivers is to provide Workforce Development Boards and the State of Texas the greatest flexibility possible to design and deliver services that meet the needs of employers and job seekers.

The following waivers were approved by DOL on December 11, 2012 (Waiver Plan Approval LetterPDF), July 14, 2014 (Waiver Plan Approval LetterPDF), and September 2, 2014 (Waiver Plan Approval LetterPDF):

  • Employer Contribution for Customized Training
  • Transferring Funds between Adult and Dislocated Worker Programs
  • Rapid Response/Incumbent Worker Training
  • WIA Formula Funds Used as Local Activity Funds
  • Contracting for Board Performance Measures
  • Common Measures and Integrated Performance
  • Older and Out-of-School Youth Use of Eligible Training Provider List
  • Extension of Certification Period for Currently Certified Training Programs
  • WIA Fund Reallocation
  • On-the-job Training Employer Reimbursement
  • Areas with High Concentration of Eligible Youth

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WIA Eligibility

WIA Eligibility Guidelines Desk References:

The Data Element Review outlines the minimum source document requirements for validating required elements.

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WIA Self-Sufficiency Wage Levels

WIA participants who are employed, but are not receiving self-sufficiency wages, may be eligible for WIA intensive services.  WIA regulations require Local Workforce Development Boards to use the U.S. Department of Labor’s 100 percent Lower Living Standard Income Level (LLSIL) guidelines to set minimum criteria for determining whether WIA Title I participants receive self-sufficiency wages in their local workforce development areas.

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Training Providers

WIA requires training providers who want to receive WIA funds to apply for certification and be included on the Statewide List of Certified Training Providers, which includes all training programs that are currently approved by one or more Workforce Development Boards and certified by TWC. Training providers must submit and receive approval of a Provider Assurance Statement to obtain access to the online application system.

Workforce Development Boards identify providers of youth activities by awarding grants/contracts on a competitive basis and based on the recommendations of the board’s Youth Council.

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