Labor agency re-org imminent

By CMTA Staff

Capitol Update, March 11, 2011 Share this on FacebookTweet thisEmail this to a friend

Earlier this week the Senate Rules Committee took up the confirmation of recently appointed Secretary of Labor and Workforce Development Agency (LWDA), Marty Morgenstern.  Morgenstern received support from Labor and Business organizations and was confirmed unanimously.

During his hearing, Morgenstern alluded to Governor Brown’s directive to downsize state government to find efficiencies and streamline programs. Several proposals to re-organize the LWDA have been submitted to Morgenstern and he will present Governor Brown with various options by April 1.

CMTA was supportive of Morgenstern’s confirmation and believes that he has the experience and the fortitude to lead such a large agency.  LWDA mainly oversees two large departments, each with their fair share of divisions-- the Department of Industrial Relations and the Employment Development Department. The mission for each Department differs greatly but they have been housed together because they deal with the labor workforce.

CMTA believes that a potential re-organization plan should consider dividing LWDA into two departments:

  • One department to enforce the Labor code and provide employers with guidance toward compliance.  This department would probably contain many of the divisions within DIR.
  • The second department would solely focus on workforce and economic development programs.  This department would ensure that all training programs and policies are aligned with a plan for jobs, which this State currently lacks.

These concepts have been shared with the Brown administration and we hope they are being considered. Whatever the outcome, it is important to continue supporting efforts to streamline government. We are hopeful that efforts to re-organize LWDA will bring a renewed focus on the need for a strong Economic Development Department whose mission is to help create middle class jobs for Californians.

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