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Fallis, Marilou
The New Director's Primer to the Job Training Partnership Act: The Basics of JTPA
Washington, D.C.: National Association of Counties (NACo), September 1991

Editor's Note: The following is based on materials extracted directly from the document. Serving as an administrator of federal job training funds, the director is instrumental in establishing training programs for low- income and disadvantaged adults and youth; programs that open a world of gainful and meaningful employment to them. The Job Training Partnership Act (JTPA) is a true partnership. The director will work with elected officials, private businesses, government agencies and other social service agencies. The program that is being administered, the Job Training Partnership Act has several aspects that set it apart from previously administered Employment and Training Programs: -- The equal authority of chief elected officials and the Private Industry Council (PIC) in the oversight of JTPA at the local level. -- Private business has an equal partnership with government -- a unique arrangement. -- JTPA is a performance-driven program guided by standards established by the federal Department of Labor and adjusted locally. -- Performance goals must be met to ensure continued funding. -- There are strict limitations on spending of JTPA funds. Training is the main focus of the program, therefore at least 70% of JTPA funds must be spent on training activities. Yet, within these limitations, there is a great deal of flexibility for local JTPA programming. Training can be designed based on client needs, labor market demands and contractor capabilities. JTPA can easily be integrated with other local training initiatives. In fact, the legislation encourages JTPA programs to work cooperatively with local departments of social services, youth, aging, and educational agencies to maximize the effectiveness of JTPA funds and reduce the likelihood of duplication of effort. Although the role of a job training director varies from SDA to SDA, and locality to locality, the director has a crucial role in employment and training programs in his or her community. This guide has been developed as part of a training package to introduce you to information that will be useful in your new role. The director will be presented with a brief historical overview of job training legislation, what the director needs to know about the JTPA regulations; various options are open in terms of programming and contracting, and where to go if assistance is needed. Definitions of terms, employment and training acronyms and suggested books/articles for more information are included as attachments. The purpose of the Job Training Partnership Act as stated in the regulations is: "to establish programs to prepare youth and unskilled adults for entry into the labor force, and to afford job training to these economically disadvantaged individuals and older individuals facing serious barriers to employment, who are in need of such training to obtain productive employment." It is the intent of the act to establish a true business and government partnership to attain this purpose.