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The summary below was written by the Congressional Research Service, which is a nonpartisan division of the Library of Congress, and was published on Jan 14, 2015.
Putting Our Veterans Back to Work Act of 2015
Amends the: (1) VOW to Hire Heroes Act of 2011 to extend through 2018 the veterans retraining assistance program, and (2) Wounded Warrior Act to extend through 2018 the authority of the Secretary of Veterans Affairs (VA) (Secretary) to provide the same rehabilitation and vocational benefits to members of the Armed Forces with severe injuries or illnesses as are provided to veterans.
Extends through: (1) March 31, 2018, additional VA rehabilitation programs for certain disabled veterans who have completed a VA rehabilitation program and have exhausted their rights to state unemployment benefits; and (2) FY2019 the collaborative veterans' training, mentoring, and placement program.
Directs the Secretary to develop a single, unified federal web-based employment portal for veterans to access information on federal programs and activities concerning veterans employment, unemployment benefits, and training.
Directs the: (1) Secretary of Homeland Security to award grants to hire veterans as firefighters, and (2) Attorney General (AG) to award grants to hire veterans as law enforcement officers.
Requires the head of each executive and defense agency to consider favorably, as an evaluation factor in federal solicitations for contracts and task or delivery orders valued at or above $25 million, the employment by a prospective contractor of veterans constituting at least 5% of the contractor's workforce.
Allows a veteran on whose behalf a complaint of a violation of employment or reemployment rights under the Uniformed Services Employment and Reemployment Rights Act (USERRA) is made by the AG to intervene in such action, and to obtain appropriate relief. Requires the AG, within 60 days after receiving a referral of an unsuccessful attempt to resolve a complaint relating to a state or private employer, to notify the person on whose behalf the complaint is submitted of either the decision to commence such an action or of when such decision is expected to be made. Requires, in the latter case, such decision to be made within an additional 30 days. Requires the AG to commence such an action when there is reasonable cause to believe that a state or private employer is engaged in a pattern or practice of resistance to the full enjoyment of such rights and benefits, and that the pattern or practice denies the full exercise of such rights and benefits.
Authorizes the suspension, termination, or debarment of federal contractors for repeated failures or refusals to comply with USERRA protections.
Provides the Special Counsel with subpoena power to require the attendance and testimony of, and production of documents from, federal employees, to be enforced through the Merit Systems Protection Board.
Authorizes the AG, in employment or reemployment rights investigations, to issue and serve a civil investigative demand for the production of documentary material.