H.R. 3638 (105th): To require a preference for Federal contractors that hire welfare recipients, to require the Secretary of Transportation ...

...to make grants to assist States and other entities in financing transportation services for welfare recipients, and

105th Congress, 1997–1998. Text as of Apr 01, 1998 (Introduced).

Status & Summary | PDF | Source: GPO

HR 3638 IH

105th CONGRESS

2d Session

H. R. 3638

To require a preference for Federal contractors that hire welfare recipients, to require the Secretary of Transportation to make grants to assist States and other entities in financing transportation services for welfare recipients, and to allow the Secretary of Health and Human Services to provide guarantees of State loans to current or recent welfare recipients.

IN THE HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES

April 1, 1998

Mr. ANDREWS introduced the following bill; which was referred to the Committee on Ways and Means, and in addition to the Committees on Transportation and Infrastructure, and Government Reform and Oversight, for a period to be subsequently determined by the Speaker, in each case for consideration of such provisions as fall within the jurisdiction of the committee concerned


A BILL

To require a preference for Federal contractors that hire welfare recipients, to require the Secretary of Transportation to make grants to assist States and other entities in financing transportation services for welfare recipients, and to allow the Secretary of Health and Human Services to provide guarantees of State loans to current or recent welfare recipients.

    Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives of the United States of America in Congress assembled,

SECTION 1. PREFERENCE FOR CONTRACTORS THAT HIRE WELFARE RECIPIENTS.

    (a) PREFERENCE- In awarding a contract covered by this section, the head of a department or agency of the Federal Government shall give preference to an entity that agrees to hire welfare recipients for jobs created to carry out the contract.

    (b) EVALUATION- To carry out subsection (a), the head of a department or agency shall develop a system under which, in the evaluation of an offer from an entity for a contract, the preference given to the entity will be greater as the number of welfare recipients that the offeror agrees to hire increases.

    (c) EXCEPTIONS- The requirement of subsection (a) shall not apply in the evaluation of offers for a contract if--

      (1) the Secretary of Defense determines that the subsection should not apply for national security reasons; or

      (2) the head of the department or agency determines that no entry-level jobs are expected to be created to carry out the contract.

    (d) COVERED CONTRACTS- This section applies to any contract in an amount in excess of $500,000 entered into after the date of the enactment of this Act by a department or agency of the Federal Government using competitive procedures.

    (e) WELFARE RECIPIENT- The term ‘welfare recipient’ means a recipient of assistance under a State program funded under part A of title IV of the Social Security Act.

SEC. 2. ACCESS TO JOBS GRANTS.

    (a) GENERAL AUTHORITY- The Secretary of Transportation shall make grants to States under this section to assist State agencies, local governmental authorities, and nonprofit organizations in financing transportation services designed to transport welfare recipients to and from jobs and activities related to their employment. The Secretary shall coordinate activities under this section with related activities under programs of other Federal departments and agencies.

    (b) GRANTS BY STATES- Each State to which a grant is made under this section shall use the grant proceeds to make grants to State agencies, local government authorities, and nonprofit organizations. In selecting applicants for grants under this subsection, the State shall consider the following:

      (1) The percentage of the population in the area to be served that are welfare recipients.

      (2) The need for additional services to transport welfare recipients to and from specified jobs, training, and other employment support services, and the extent to which the proposed services will address those needs.

      (3) The extent to which the applicant demonstrates coordination with, and the financial commitment of, existing transportation service providers.

      (4) The extent to which the applicant demonstrates maximum utilization of existing transportation service providers and expands existing transit networks or hours of service or both.

      (5) The extent to which the applicant demonstrates an innovative approach that is responsive to identified service needs.

      (6) The extent to which the applicant presents a comprehensive approach to addressing the needs of welfare recipients and identifies long-term financing strategies to support the services under this section.

    (c) ELIGIBLE PROJECTS- A State may make grants under this section only for--

      (1) capital projects and to finance operating costs of equipment, facilities, and associated capital maintenance items related to providing access to jobs under this section;

      (2) promoting the use of transit by workers with nontraditional work schedules;

      (3) promoting the use by appropriate agencies of transit vouchers for welfare recipients under specific terms and conditions developed by the Secretary; and

      (4) promoting the use of employer-provided transportation including the transit pass benefit program under subsections (a) and (f) of section 132 of the Internal Revenue Code of 1986.

    No planning or coordination activities are eligible for assistance under this section.

    (d) FEDERAL SHARE OF COSTS- The Federal share of costs under this section shall be provided from funds apportioned under this section. The Federal share of the costs for a project under this section shall not exceed 50 percent of the net project cost. The remainder shall be provided in cash from sources other than revenues from providing mass transportation. Funds appropriated to a Federal department or agency (other than the Department of Transportation) and eligible to be used for transportation may be used toward the nongovernment share payable on a project under this section.

    (e) PLANNING REQUIREMENTS- The requirements of sections 5303 through 5306 of title 49, United States Code, apply to grants made under this section. Applications must reflect coordination with and the approval of affected transit grant recipients and the projects financed

must be part of a coordinated public transit-human services transportation planning process.

    (f) GRANT REQUIREMENTS- A grant under this section shall be subject to all of the terms and conditions of grants made under section 5307 of title 49, United States Code, and such terms and conditions as determined by the Secretary.

    (g) APPORTIONMENT OF FUNDS- The Secretary shall apportion funds appropriated to carry out this section for each fiscal year among the States in the ratio that the amount paid to each State under section 403(a)(1) of the Social Security Act for the fiscal year bears to the total amount paid to all States under that section for the fiscal year.

    (h) PROGRAM EVALUATION-

      (1) COMPTROLLER GENERAL- Six months after the date of the enactment of this Act and each 6 months thereafter, the Comptroller General shall conduct a study to evaluate the access to jobs program conducted under this section and transmit to the Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure of the House of Representatives and the Committee on Banking, Housing, and Urban Affairs of the Senate the results of the study.

      (2) DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION- Within 2 years after the date of the enactment of this Act, the Secretary shall conduct a study to evaluate the access to jobs program conducted under this section and transmit to the Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure of the House of Representatives and the Committee on Banking, Housing, and Urban Affairs of the Senate the results of the study.

    (i) DEFINITIONS- In this section, the following definitions apply:

      (1) CAPITAL PROJECT AND URBANIZED AREA- The terms ‘capital project’ and ‘urbanized area’ have the meanings such terms have under section 5302 of title 49, United States Code.

      (2) EXISTING TRANSPORTATION SERVICE PROVIDERS- The term ‘existing transportation service providers’ means mass transportation operators and governmental agencies and nonprofit organizations that receive assistance from Federal, State, or local sources for nonemergency transportation services.

      (3) WELFARE RECIPIENT- The term ‘welfare recipient’ means an individual who receives or received aid or assistance under a State program funded under part A of title IV of the Social Security Act (whether in effect before or after the effective date of the amendments made by title I of the Personal Responsibility and Work Opportunity Reconciliation Act of 1996) at any time during the 3-year period ending on the date the applicant applies for a grant under this section.

    (j) FUNDING- There is authorized to be appropriated to carry out this section $500,000,000 per fiscal year for fiscal years 1999 through 2004. Such sums shall remain available until expended.

SEC. 3. GUARANTEES OF LOANS MADE BY STATES TO CURRENT OR RECENT WELFARE RECIPIENTS.

    (a) IN GENERAL- The Secretary of Health and Human Services may provide loan guarantees to States in accordance with this section.

    (b) LIMITATION ON ANNUAL AMOUNT OF LOAN GUARANTEES- The total dollar amount of loan guarantees that may be provided under this section in a fiscal year shall not exceed $50,000,000.

    (c) LIMITATION ON ANNUAL AMOUNT OF LOAN GUARANTEES PER STATE- The total dollar amount of loan guarantees that may be provided to a State under this section in a fiscal year is the amount that bears the same ratio to $50,000,000 as the total dollar amount payable to the State under section 403(a)(1) of the Social Security Act for the fiscal year (determined without regard to any penalty imposed under section 409 of such Act) bears to the total dollar amount payable to all States under such section 403(a)(1) for the fiscal year (as so determined).

    (d) LOANS THAT MAY BE GUARANTEED- The Secretary of Health and Human Services may provide a loan guarantee under this section with respect to a loan if--

      (1) the loan is made by a State;

      (2) the borrower is a recipient of assistance under a State program funded under part A of title IV of the Social Security Act;

      (3) the principal amount of the loan is not less than $20 and not more than $5,000; and

      (4) the loan bears interest at an annual rate that does not exceed the rate at which interest is payable annually on bonds most recently issued by the smallest political subdivision of the State in which the borrower resides that has borrowing authority.

    (e) DEFINITION OF STATE- In this section, the term ‘State’ has the meaning given such term in section 419(5) of the Social Security Act.

    (f) REGULATIONS- The Secretary of Health and Human Services shall prescribe such regulations as may be necessary to carry out this section.