DOL Distributes $101 million to States for Trade Adjustment Assistance

Department of Labor today released $101 million to help states provide career training, job search, and relocation assistance to U.S. workers who lose their jobs for trade-related reasons.

"A revitalized Trade Adjustment Assistance program is an important element of our nation's economic recovery," said Secretary of Labor Hilda L. Solis.

Provided to 41 states, this money is the balance of the fiscal year (FY) 2009 Trade Adjustment Assistance (TAA) base allocations that were announced in October 2008. DOL previously had provided $88 million for TAA activities under the federal government's continuing resolution. For those qualifying states that experience large, unexpected layoffs during the year, the department maintains a reserve fund.

The American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 (Recovery Act) includes a major expansion and reform of the TAA program to ensure that all U.S. workers negatively affected by trade have the skills, resources and support to become re-employed.

Mandated reforms to the TAA program will take effect May 18. Among these, the Recovery Act raises the annual cap on TAA training funds from $220 million to $575 million. DOL said soon it will announce additional TAA training allocations to all states, based on the increased funding authorization to support implementation of the enhanced program.

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