Congressman Adam Smith’s legislation to create jobs for Veterans has been reported out of committee as part of the National Defense Authorization Act for 2011 and is expected to be voted on the House Floor next week. The bill, Veterans to Work Pilot Program Act, will expand job opportunities by creating a 5-year pilot program to enroll military veterans in apprenticeship programs and employ them on military construction projects.

“We should be doing everything possible to ensure that our military personnel come home to good, family-wage, quality job opportunities,” said Congressman Adam Smith. “By calling upon the Department of Defense to explore the utilization of veteran apprentices in military construction projects, we are working to find innovative ways to help our veterans secure employment and ease the transition into civilian life.”

The legislation would specifically require the Secretary of Defense to designate at least twenty military construction projects per year where, to the maximum extent feasible, the utilization of veteran apprenticeship labor would be required. At the end of each year, and at the conclusion of the pilot program, the Secretary would be required to submit a report to Congress that, among other things, evaluates the benefits of employing apprentices who are veterans on Military Construction projects.

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