Welcoming New Link, “Line Items”- Important Blog Page via Maine Center for Economic Policy

Posted on May 24, 2013. Filed under: Uncategorized | Tags: , , , , , , , |

mecepLink here to site; here is a bit of their latest share, an important analysis with recommendations to lawmakers regarding LD 90, “An Act To Strengthen Maine’s Workforce and Economic Future” by Judy Harris: “Workforce bill helps adult learners, but does not go far enough” (emphasis mine).

    “A select committee of the 126th Maine Legislature set out to attract adults with prior education credits back to school. An Act to Strengthen Maine’s Workforce and Economic Future (LD 90) creates a UMaine scholarship program for adults to finish their baccalaureate degrees, expands community college associate degree programs, and eases the transfer of credits between the two. It also establishes a task force to find ways to increase adult degree completion rates. The House and Senate both unanimously passed the bill, which will jumpstart new careers for an estimated 2,300 working Mainers, raise incomes, and provide needed workforce skills for today’s economy.

    The committee is to be commended for their vision, hard work, and bipartisanship. Clearly LD 90 will help improve job prospects for many Mainers who, with a university education, can compete for better-paying jobs. Yet, low-income adults will have difficulty taking advantage of the bill’s good intentions.

    Maine’s Competitive Skills Scholarship program (CSSP) does just that. CSSP provides grants to low-income students not only for tuition and books, but also for child care, transportation, and family emergencies critical for them to enter and stay in school. CSSP makes higher education accessible to low-income, working Mainers.

    Unfortunately LD 90 does nothing for CSSP, which is proposed to be cut in the governor’s budget.

    We applaud the efforts of the legislature’s workforce committee. We support its ongoing work. We urge it to take a second look at CSSP.”

Many thanks to MECEP for their excellent work and to Ms Harris for this important write-up.

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