Workforce Investment Act: Coordination Between TANF Programs and One-Stop Centers Is Increasing, but Challenges Remain

GAO-02-500T Published: Mar 12, 2002. Publicly Released: Mar 12, 2002.
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The Workforce Investment Act (WIA) brought most federally funded employment and training services into a single, one-stop center system. Coordination between Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) programs and one-stop centers has increased since the act was implemented in 2000. Nearly all states reported some coordination at either the state or the local level. Most often, coordination took one of two forms: colocation, in which a client accesses TANF programs at the local one-stop, or referrals and electronic links to off-site programs. Despite progress, states and localities continue to report problems because of infrastructure limitations and varying program definitions and reporting requirements. Some of these challenges could be overcome through state and local innovation, but others will be resolved only through federal intervention. Early evidence suggests that states and localities are increasing their efforts to bring services together to fit local needs. As states and localities have begun to recognize the shared goals of the workforce and welfare systems, they have developed ways to coordinate services.

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