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  H.B. No. 2784
 
 
 
 
AN ACT
  relating to the creation of the Texas Industry-Recognized
  Apprenticeship Programs Grant Program.
         BE IT ENACTED BY THE LEGISLATURE OF THE STATE OF TEXAS:
         SECTION 1.  Chapter 302, Labor Code, is amended by adding
  Subchapter I to read as follows:
  SUBCHAPTER I. TEXAS INDUSTRY-RECOGNIZED APPRENTICESHIP PROGRAMS
  GRANT PROGRAM
         Sec. 302.251.  PURPOSE. The purpose of the Texas
  Industry-Recognized Apprenticeship Programs Grant Program is to
  address the immediate industrial workforce needs of this state
  resulting from the impact of Hurricane Harvey and overall workforce
  shortages.
         Sec. 302.252.  DEFINITIONS. In this subchapter:
               (1)  "Industry-recognized apprenticeship program"
  means a training program that:
                     (A)  provides on-the-job training, preparatory
  instruction, supplementary instruction, or related instruction in
  an occupation that has been recognized as an apprenticeable
  occupation by the Office of Apprenticeship of the United States
  Department of Labor; or
                     (B)  is certified as an industry-recognized
  apprenticeship program by a third-party certifier that has received
  from the United States Department of Labor a favorable
  determination of qualification to award that certification.
               (2)  "Person" does not include a governmental entity.
         Sec. 302.253.  PROGRAM. The commission shall establish and
  administer the Texas Industry-Recognized Apprenticeship Programs
  Grant Program to encourage the private sector to develop
  specialized industry-recognized apprenticeship programs in this
  state. Under the program, the commission shall award grants to
  persons who meet the requirements of Section 302.255.
         Sec. 302.254.  TEXAS INDUSTRY-RECOGNIZED APPRENTICESHIP
  FUND. (a) The Texas industry-recognized apprenticeship fund is a
  dedicated account in the general revenue fund.
         (b)  The following amounts shall be deposited in the fund:
               (1)  money appropriated by the legislature for the fund
  for purposes described by this subchapter;
               (2)  interest earned on the investment of money in the
  fund; and
               (3)  gifts, grants, and other donations received for
  the fund.
         (c)  The fund may be used only for an apprenticeship program
  that meets the requirements of Section 302.255.
         Sec. 302.255.  APPLICATION; ELIGIBILITY FOR GRANT. The
  commission shall establish eligibility criteria for a person to
  receive a grant under this subchapter.  The eligibility criteria
  must include the requirement that the person:
               (1)  apply to the commission in the form and manner
  prescribed by commission rule;
               (2)  if the person is an entity, be in good standing
  under the laws of the state in which the person was formed or
  organized, as evidenced by a certificate issued by the secretary of
  state or the state official of another state having custody of the
  records pertaining to a person formed or organized under the laws of
  that state;
               (3)  not owe delinquent taxes to a taxing unit of this
  state; and
               (4)  operate an industry-recognized apprenticeship
  program that:
                     (A)  provides on-the-job training under an
  industry-recognized, accredited training curriculum;
                     (B)  guarantees employment for participants
  during and on successful completion of the training period;
                     (C)  pays each participant a wage and provides
  eligibility for participants to receive full-time employee
  benefits during and on successful completion of the training
  period;
                     (D)  requires participants to advance their
  skills, at a minimum, to a credentialed, performance-verified
  mid-level status in a field related to the industry-recognized
  apprenticeship program;
                     (E)  has a duration of not more than 26 weeks; and
                     (F)  gives preference to training and hiring:
                           (i)  unemployed Texans who have filed with
  the commission;
                           (ii)  veterans of the United States armed
  forces;
                           (iii)  formerly incarcerated individuals;
  and
                           (iv)  underemployed individuals who are
  working without industry-recognized certifications or other
  credentials.
         Sec. 302.256.  GRANT AWARD; GRANT AMOUNT.  (a)  The
  commission may award grants under this subchapter only to reimburse
  an eligible person for the cost of training industry-recognized
  apprenticeship program participants who:
               (1)  complete a program operated by the person that
  meets the requirements of Section 302.255(4) having achieved the
  skills level required by Section 302.255(4)(D); and
               (2)  maintain suitable employment for at least 12
  consecutive months immediately following completion of the
  program.
         (b)  Grant funds awarded to an eligible person under this
  subchapter must be awarded on a per industry-recognized
  apprenticeship program participant basis. The amount of a grant
  awarded to an eligible person for training a participant described
  by Subsection (a) may not exceed the lesser of:
               (1)  the total cost to the person for training the
  participant, excluding wages and benefits; or
               (2)  $10,000.
         (c)  In determining the amount of a grant awarded under this
  subchapter for an industry-recognized apprenticeship program
  participant, the commission may consider the increased economic
  value to the state resulting from or reasonably anticipated to
  result from the participant's completion of the program, including
  by considering any increase or anticipated increase in the amount
  of tax revenue generated by the participant, and any decrease in the
  participant's use of a state-funded benefit, attributable to the
  participant's job placement and earning projections. The
  commission by rule may establish guidelines or formulas for
  determining an increase in economic value to the state attributable
  to a participant's program completion for purposes of this
  subsection.
         (d)  The commission by rule may establish limitations on the
  total amount of grant funds that a person may be awarded under this
  subchapter.
         Sec. 302.257.  PROGRAM RULES. (a)  The commission shall
  adopt rules to administer and enforce this subchapter.
         (b)  The commission shall post the rules on its Internet
  website.
         Sec. 302.258.  ANNUAL REPORT. (a) Not later than December 1
  of each year, the commission shall submit to the lieutenant
  governor, the speaker of the house of representatives, and the
  members of the legislature a report on grants made under this
  subchapter that states:
               (1)  the number of direct jobs each grant recipient
  created in this state in each job category of the federal Equal
  Employment Opportunity Commission's job classification guide;
               (2)  the median wage of the jobs each grant recipient
  created in this state;
               (3)  the total amount of each grant awarded to a grant
  recipient;
               (4)  the number and categorization of
  industry-recognized apprenticeship program participants trained
  and employed by each grant recipient under Section 302.255(4)(F);
               (5)  a determination of whether the grant program
  administered under this subchapter has resulted in a positive
  return on investment to the state and an explanation of the methods
  used by the commission in making that determination; and
               (6)  if the commission considers it appropriate and
  feasible, a list of recommendations for legislative or other
  changes to the grant program administered under this subchapter to
  increase the return on investment to the state.
         (b)  The report may not include information that is made
  confidential by law.
         (c)  The commission may require a grant recipient under this
  subchapter to submit, on a form provided by the commission,
  information required to complete the report.
         (d)  The commission shall post the annual report on its
  Internet website.
         SECTION 2.  The Texas Workforce Commission is required to
  implement a provision of this Act only if the legislature
  appropriates money specifically for that purpose. If the
  legislature does not appropriate money specifically for that
  purpose, the Texas Workforce Commission may, but is not required
  to, implement a provision of this Act using other appropriations
  available for that purpose.
         SECTION 3.  This Act takes effect September 1, 2019.
 
 
  ______________________________ ______________________________
     President of the Senate Speaker of the House     
 
 
         I certify that H.B. No. 2784 was passed by the House on May
  10, 2019, by the following vote:  Yeas 117, Nays 16, 1 present, not
  voting; and that the House concurred in Senate amendments to H.B.
  No. 2784 on May 24, 2019, by the following vote:  Yeas 119, Nays 23,
  2 present, not voting.
 
  ______________________________
  Chief Clerk of the House   
 
         I certify that H.B. No. 2784 was passed by the Senate, with
  amendments, on May 22, 2019, by the following vote:  Yeas 27, Nays
  4.
 
  ______________________________
  Secretary of the Senate   
  APPROVED: __________________
                  Date       
   
           __________________
                Governor