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COALIT ION OF FLORIDA FARM W ORKER ORGANIZAT IONS, Inc . CSBG/T&TA June 30, 2009 Participating Community Special Interest Articles: Summary: • WIA program The Coalition of Florida Farmworker Organizations (COFFO) cuts for 2010. has been contracting with the Department of Community Affairs on a project that will assist Community Action Agencies • Intro to Ag with high farmworker concentrations outreach farmworkers. The contract requires that COFFO establish a CSBG Guest-Work Farmworker Advisory Council. Bill COFFO would like to thank all the CAA members who helped by sending information that can be shared through out Florida. • Losses This Season • ―Be Counted in 2010‖. T & TA Newsletter Page 2 of 7 E-NEWS YOU CAN USE Monday, May 11, 2009 On Thursday, May 7th, the White House released its detailed spending request for Fiscal Year (FY) 2010, as well as a volume of proposed cuts or eliminations to 121 programs that would save $17 billion in 2010. Although most workforce programs were funded at FY 2009 levels, Workforce Investment Act (WIA) Adult, Youth, and Dislocated Worker programs received a substantial infusion of funds from the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act, which is also known as the Recovery Act. The chart below illustrates specific funding details. USDOL Employment and Training Administration (Figures noted in thousands of dollars) Program Fiscal Year Recovery Act Fiscal Year 2010 Dollar Difference % Difference 2009 Request Between Fiscal Between FY Year 2009 and 2009 and FY Fiscal Year Request 2010 Request Adult Employment and Training Activities 861,540 500,000 861,540 0 0.00% Dislocated Workers Employment and 1,341,891 1,450,000 1,413,000 71,109 5.30% Training Activities Youth Activities 924,069 1,200,000 924,069 0 0.00% Green Jobs Innovation Fund 0 0 50,000 50,000 Not Applicable Workforce Data Quality Initiative 0 0 15,000 15,000 Not Applicable Reintegration of Ex-Offenders 108,493 0 115,000 6,507 6.00% Career Pathways Innovation Fund 125,000 0 135,000 10,000 8.00% Pilots, Demonstrations and Research 48,781 0 57,500 8,719 17.87% Evaluations 6,918 0 11,600 4,682 67.68% Women in Apprenticeship 1,000 0 1,000 0 0.00% Denali Commission 3,378 0 0 -3,378 -100.00% Indian and Native American Programs 52,758 0 52,758 0 0.00% Migrant and Seasonal Farmworkers 82,620 0 82,620 0 0.00% Youthbuild 70,000 50,000 114,476 44,476 63.54% Job Training for Employment in High 0 750,000 0 0 Not Applicable Growth Industries Total Budget Authority 3,626,448 3,950,000 3,833,563 207,115 5.71% Source: FY 2010 Department of Labor, Budget in Detail Proposed new USDOL budget items are the Green Jobs Innovation Fund, and the Workforce Data Quality Initiative. The Green Jobs Innovation Fund is designed to complement and extend the job training for employment in high growth industries grants funded under the Recovery Act. The President is requesting $50 million which ETA would use to award 25 -60 grants with an estimated 8,300 trainees. The Workforce Data Quality Initiative will provide competitive grants to support the develop ment of longitudinal data systems that integrate education and workforce data in order to track individuals as they progress through the education system and into the workforce. The budget requests $15 million for this initiative. Page 3 of 7 T & TA Newsletter The Coalition will continue to monitor the FY 2010 appropriations process for our members and report important findings – as well as competitive grant opportunities – as they become available. PRESIDENT CALLS FOR REVIEW OF JOB TRAINING PROGRAMS This past Friday, May 8th, President Obama announced his intent to review the nation's job training programs. As part of that effort, he announced a new program for states and colleges to help the jobless seek education and training without losing their unemployment benefits. In a few weeks, President Obama will lay out a fundamental rethinking of the nation’s job training, vocational education, and community college programs. "It's time to move beyond the idea that we need several different programs to address several different problems -- we need one comprehensive policy that addresses our comprehensive challenges," said President Obama. In the past, similar remarks from a President have signaled major legislative changes. To view the President’s comments, please go to the following link http://www.whitehouse.gov/the_press_office/Remarks-by-the-President-on-Job-Creation-and- Job-Training-5/8/09/. WIA REAUTHORIZATION UPDATE On Tuesday, May 5th, the House Subcommittee on Higher Education, Lifelong Learning, and Competitiveness held a hearing to examine best practices for improving adult education and family literacy. This was the fourth hearing that the Subcommittee has held as it works toward reauthorizing WIA. The hearing examined best practices for improving adult education and family literacy programs funded under Title II of WIA. As the hearing ended, subcommittee Chairman Ruben Hinojosa (D-TX) cautioned that the new version of WIA must “cap” how much money is spent on subcontractors and administration. His analysis from 1998 to now showed that some regions were spending only 30% to 40% of federal resources on training for individuals. He felt that subcontractor’s profits, wasteful use of funds, and heavy administrative costs needed to be addressed in the future legislation. "I would like to see a minimum of 60 percent (of the resources) used for training of participants.‖ Before he adjourned the hearing, Chairman Hinojosa asked the audience for ideas how to cap the profits made by subcontractors and reduce administrative expenses . The Coalition will continue to carefully monitor WIA Reauthorization and strategically advocate Coalition positions. WIA ALLOTMENTS FOR FY 2009 AVAILABLE On Thursday, May 7 th, the Employment and Training Administration (ETA) issued Training and Employment Guidance Letter (TEGL) 20-08 providing WIA Adult, Dislocated Worker, and Youth Activities Program Allotments for Program Year 2009. Coalition members may want to use this information to plan for Program Year 2009. The website for the ETA TEGL is http://wdr.doleta.gov/directives/attach/TEGL/TEGL20-08.pdf. T & TA Newsletter Page 4 of 7 SENATE APPROVES TWO LABOR DEPARTMENT NOMINEES On Friday, May 1st, the Senate approved Brian Kennedy to be Assistant Secretary of Labor for Congressional and Intergovernmental Affairs, and T. Michael Kerr to be Assistant Secretary of Labor for Administration and Management. The Coalition wishes them both well in their new responsibilities. NEWS From Washington Feinstein introduces ag guest-worker bill By Michael Doyle / Bee Washington Bureau WASHINGTON — Democratic Sen. Dianne Feinstein on Thursday introduced an ambitious agricultural guest-worker bill that faces a harder road than ever before. Feinstein’s legislation to legalize upward of 2 million illegal immigrant farmworkers and their family members resembles similar bills that have been regularly but unsuccessfully introduced since September 2003. Herself a former opponent of the agricultural guest-worker proposal, Feinstein now says it is needed to keep farms in business. The legislation combines streamlining of the existing but infrequently used H-2A guest-worker program with a legalization plan for farmworkers already in the United States illegally. ―There is a farm emergency in this country,‖ Feinstein said in a half-hour Senate speech, and ―most of it is caused by the absence of farm labor.‖ The illegal immigrant farmworkers could attain temporary legal status after meeting certain criteria, including a commitment to keep working in agriculture for several years. Eventually, they could apply to become U.S. citizens. ―There are very few Americans who are willing to take the jobs in a hot field, doing backbreaking labor,‖ Feinstein said, ―and that’s just a fact.‖ There is much about the 105-page bill that is familiar. The coalition supporting the Agricultural Job Opportunities, Benefits and Security Act, or AgJOBS, remains largely intact. The United Farm Workers of America supports the legislation, as do farm groups like the California Farm Bureau Federation. The evidence offered in support of the bill is also familiar. Page 5 of 7 T & TA Newsletter Feinstein on Thursday resurrected previously told stories about farmers hurt by worker shortages — like Lake County pear farmer Toni Scully, whose lost-crop plight was first publicized in 2006. Feinstein used a three-year-old photo of Scully to help make her case. But a coalition of border-security advocates and other skeptics, too, remains intact, and in some potentially important ways the advocates have lost clout. The original Republican co-author of the AgJOBS effort, Sen. Larry Craig of Idaho, has since retired, his reputation tarnished by an arrest in an airport men’s room. So far, none of the 17 Senate co-sponsors of Feinstein’s bill is Republican. The original Democratic author and a longtime force in immigration politics, Sen. Edward Kennedy of Massachusetts, is all but out of commission with brain cancer. Kennedy has missed 69 of the last 73 Senate votes taken since April 1. But even getting the bill introduced is an important step forward, said Joel Nelsen, president of the Exeter-based California Citrus Mutual: ―You’ve got to put your marker down.‖ Forwarded by Greg Schell LAKELAND LEDGER June 26, 2009 Growers Faced Many Losses This Season BONITA SPRINGS - Rumors of the death of the Florida citrus industry have been greatly exaggerated, Mike Sparks told journalists at the beginning of his annual "State of Florida Citrus" address Thursday. Tongues will continue wagging, however, until the industry conquers its No. 1 threat, citrus greening. "Certainly the first words that come to mind is a sense of urgency," said Sparks, the chief executive at Lakeland-based Florida Citrus Mutual, the state's largest growers' representative. "The spread of (greening) makes it the most serious disease on the planet. It's put a $9 billion industry at risk." The Sparks address came at the Florida Citrus Industry Annual Conference hosted by Citrus Mutual in Bonita Springs. Greening is a fatal bacterial disease that has spread to every commercial citrus county in Florida, he said. Because many citrus growers won't replant groves destroyed by greening, it's a factor in the continuing decline of citrus acreage and fruit production across the state. The just completed 2008-09 Florida citrus season has been particularly tough because, while greening increases grove caretaking costs, many growers of oranges, the state's largest citrus commodity, sold this season's crop at a loss. Sparks put the growers' break-even point for juice oranges at $1.25 per pound solids, a measure of how much juice processors squeeze from the fruit. Processors, who buy 95 percent of Florida oranges, pay based on pound solids. But the cash-market price, paid for fruit delivered to the processor's door on the spot, hovered around 80 cents to 90 cents per pound solids for most of the season, Sparks said. T & TA Newsletter Page 6 of 7 Factors holding down farm prices this season include high inventories of juice from previous seasons held by Florida processors and declining U.S. retail OJ sales, Sparks said. Those highlight the need for stronger OJ marketing at the Florida Department of Citrus. Factors holding down farm prices this season include high inventories of juice from previ ous seasons held by Florida processors and declining U.S. retail OJ sales, Sparks said. Those highlight the need for stronger OJ marketing at the Florida Department of Citrus. But, he added, "if we don't beat greening, we simply won't have a product to sell." In morning seminars at the conference, growers got a complicated picture of current federal immigration reform efforts from Brian Koji of the Tampa law firm of Allen, Norton and Blue PA. The Obama administration has announced a shift in immigration policy to enforcement actions against employers who "hire illegal immigrants to drive down wages," Koji said. The previous Bush administration had targeted the workers themselves, he said. Administrative actions rose from 25 cases in 2002 to 4,077 cases in 2007. The Bush administration also attempted to toughen the rules that allowed employers to retain workers after receiving "no-match letters" from the Social Security Administration. That notifies employers the worker's name and Social Security But employers still need to strictly follow new procedures for filling out the new DHS I-9 forms and dealing with no-match letters to avoid legal liability, Koji said. The Obama administration also quashed a last-minute Bush reform dealing with the federal H-2A program, which allows agriculture employers to bring in temporary foreign workers legally. The Bush reform, favored by Florida citrus and other agriculture groups, eliminated H-2A red tape. The U.S. Census Bureau is issuing a call to action: “BE COUNTED IN 2010” CENSUS 201A 2010 Census Summit was hosted by the Atlanta Regional Census Center of the US Census Bureau. A day and a half summit was held to brainstorm and discuss strategies to help ensure and accurate and complete count for the 2010 decennial census. The summit was held in Lake Buena Vista Florida on June 25, 2009. Page 7 of 7 T & TA Newsletter Pictured are several Farmworker partners from south Florida who participated in the Atlanta Regional Census Center’s 2010 Migrant Farm worker Partnership Summit held in Orlando, Florida area June 25, 2009. (Left to right; Maria Adame, COFFO, Sheryl Soukup, Immokalee Nonprofit Housing, Lucy Ortiz, Shelter for Abused Women , Marcela Rice, Partnership Specialist, Robert Sele, Amigos en Cristo). The focus of this summit was to reach out to farmworker groups and other organizati ons such as: Community Based Organizations, Faith-Based Organizations, local schools, child care and health providers, who can play a major role in assisting the Census Bureau, in counting everyone. Yes, especially those hard to serve difficult populations, such as rural poor, migrant farm worker, immigrants and Hispanics. Discussions centered on bridging existing barriers and fears associated with inaccurate reporting. ―The Fear of outsiders often keeps individuals from filling out the questionnaire. Confidentiality of data and information reported was at the top of the list of topics discussed. Many individuals/families fear government; is well know. However, it is very important for all of us to understand and realize that the Census data is used for the allocation of funds to States. Historically more than 300 billion is allocated to States with grants awards and amounts based in part on the Census population data. It has been documented that in the past special populations, such as rural poor and farmworkers have gone unreported and/or just not counted. This is our opportunity to get involved and to help ensure everyone gets reported and we receive our fair share. It is also very important for all of us to do our part. The Census Bureau is reaching out to everyone for help. Although there were no CAA represented at this summit. COFFO is committed to ensuring the Census Bureau reaches out to all CAAs in Florida. By partnering with the Census we all can make a real difference in 2010. If the Census Bureau has not yet reach out to you, ―Take the first step and reach out to your local Census Partnership Specialist in their area. In addition, the Bureau is recruiting minorities and bilingual employees to help identify and assist individuals with the census questioners. Anyone interested in obtaining employment with the bureau should contact. Contact the Census Bureau at 2010census.gov and for employment in your area 2010censusjobs.gov or toll-free 1-866-861-2010. Again all Community Action Agency’ should activity get involved with the 2010 Census.
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