Information on the Labor Department's Skill Training Improvement Program

HRD-79-19: Published: Jan 19, 1979. Publicly Released: Jan 19, 1979.

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By Congressional request, GAO studied the eligibility criteria used by the Department of Labor (DOL) for participation in its Skill Training Improvement Program (STIP) and specifically how the DOL Region V office conducted the first round funding of STIP and what corrective action was taken to resolve any problems which may have arisen. A comparison was also made between STIP and the then current Comprehensive Employment Training Act (CETA) of 1973.

The DOL Region V program rating panel found that the initial funding of the STIP program lacked employer and union involvement in the training, placement, and hiring of STIP participants. The excessively high administrative costs and general lack of program direction was attributed to the absence of a STIP oversight committee. Similarities with the CETA, title I program included the upgrading of present job skills of currently employed workers although CETA included unemployed people as well. DOL placed upper limit income restrictions on CETA applicants. Those limits have now been raised for the STIP program. According to DOL, STIP was intended to be a short-term demonstration program, and if successful, prime sponsors would be encouraged to replicate STIP-type activities under the basic CETA training program.

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