e-News 8/3/2018

Strengthening Career & Technical Education
U.S. Economy Springs to Life
House Appropriations Committee Completes Work on All 12 Funding Bills
“Rodney Frelinghuysen’s Last Appropriations Markup Hurrah”
Worth a Read: “Biz schools hit by China purge on foreign university tie-ups.”
Salute: The Reverend Ernie Kosa


Strengthening Career & Technical Education

The President signed into law this week bipartisan legislation designed to strengthen and improve career and technical education and give Americans the skills they need to compete for in-demand, 21st Century jobs.

H.R. 2353, the Strengthening Career and Technical Education for the 21st Century Act, reauthorizes the Carl D. Perkins Career and Technical Education Act. This is the first major overhaul to the program since 2006. 

This is a clear win for America’s workers. We have more than six million unfilled jobs across this nation, due in part to a widening skills gap.  This bill has been a long time coming and will support innovative learning opportunities and strong community partnerships, addressing the problem of vacant jobs and workforce development needs where they exist: at the local level.

For a summary of the bill, please visit.

For more information, please visit.

The House vote in favor of H.R. 2353 was unanimous. 


U.S. Economy Springs to Life

If recent history is any indication, there may soon be significantly more demand for skilled U.S. workers.  According to the Department of Commerce’s Bureau of Economic Analysis (BEA), the U.S. economy grew at its fastest pace in nearly four years in the second quarter of 2018. Learn more here.

The Gross Domestic Product jumped 4.1% for best pace in nearly four years - the fastest rate of the growth since the third quarter of 2014 and the third-best growth rate since the Great Recession of 2008.  In addition to the strong second quarter, the Commerce Department revised its first-quarter reading up from 2 percent to 2.2 percent.

This growth is being driven by the lower corporate taxes and a robust labor market, which created an average of 215,000 jobs per month in the first half of this year.  Unemployment is near an 18-year low, factories are seeing more orders, and exports appear to be surging. 

In addition, compensation for workers rose to a nearly 10-year high in the second quarter. Significant wage gains have been a missing part of the economic recovery, with average hourly earnings increases barely keeping pace with inflation.  Learn more here.


House Appropriations Committee Completes Work on All 12 Funding Bills

As I mentioned, The House Appropriations Committee has achieved a great deal so far this year – drafting and approving all 12 bills and getting half of these through the House floor, plus holding more than 70 hearings since February.

Ours is an open and member - driven Appropriations process – holding Member Days to ensure our bills represent the values and priorities of the people we represent, following a long tradition of bipartisanship.

Members have had – and will have – additional opportunities to have their voices heard as we continue to pass bills on the floor and put more of them through House - Senate Conference Committees.

The 12 bills that we have moved through the House fund vital programs across the federal government, including those that bolster our national security and rebuild our Armed Forces, make Americans safer, protect our nation’s resources, and expand our economy and create jobs.

In addition to providing this necessary funding, the bills ensure that the federal government is working more efficiently, and in the best interest of the American taxpayers. This includes streamlining federal agencies, reforming financial policies, and reducing burdensome regulatory red tape.  Here’s a sampling of some of the bills passed by the House during this Appropriations cycle:

  • For a rundown on the Energy and Water, Military Construction and Veterans Affairs, and the Legislative Branch Appropriations bills, please visit.
  • For more information on the FY 2019 Defense Appropriations bill, please visit.
  • For more information on the Financial Services/General Government Appropriations bill, please visit.


“Rodney Frelinghuysen’s Last Appropriations Markup Hurrah” Read the Roll Call story.


Worth a Read: “Business schools hit by China purge on foreign university tie-ups.”

The Financial Times writes, that overseas universities face competition from innovative Chinese counterparts.  Read the story here.


Salute: A fond farewell to the Rev. Ernie Kosa of Sparta who recently passed away at age 96. A former Army chaplain and longtime volunteer for a variety of causes, Ernie supported such charitable organizations as Sussex County Retired Senior Volunteer Program, Sussex County Mental Health Board, Newton Medical Center and Easter Seals.  But as a veteran of the Korean and Vietnam wars, Kosa retained a special place in his heart for those who have served in the uniform of their nation.  Among his many contributions, he was instrumental in the establishment of a veterans' cemetery in Sussex County. He was a good friend and his wife, Barbara, equally gave her time to support veterans and their families.  Ernie Kosa will be missed but his impact on Sussex County life will be long-remembered.