Congressman Adam Smith released the following statement in support of Trade Adjustment Assistance:
“I voted in support of Trade Adjustment Assistance (TAA) today because it allows workers in my district and across the country to access critical support to compete in our global economy. Those who are impacted from increased competition deserve to be retrained so they can reenter the job market. TAA will expire on September 30 and unless it is reauthorized, our workers will no longer have access to this assistance.
“Although I supported the bill, this is not the best reauthorization legislation the House could consider. Unlike the TAA bill that I introduced with Ranking Member Levin earlier this year, today’s bill has several shortcomings, including one of critical concern. This legislation cuts funding for worker training from $575 million to $450 million at a time when we are expanding markets and transforming our economy. Should this funding not be sufficient, I hope the Administration is prepared to work with Congress to provide additional resources with the same vigor they’ve invested in passing TPA.
“Although I am glad to see that we are no longer paying for this program by cutting funds from Medicare, I remain disappointed that this bill does not qualify public sector workers for Trade Adjustment Assistance. They are an important part of our workforce and should be able to qualify for access to the same services.
“Our nation's economy and success depend on our workers. Over the last decade, I have been a strong supporter of Trade Adjustment Assistance and have led the effort to protect, extend, and enhance the program. Despite this bill being imperfect, I believe in this program and will continue this fight for good jobs, to ensure American workers can provide for their families, and that our country remains competitive.”