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PRINTER'S NO. 52
THE GENERAL ASSEMBLY OF PENNSYLVANIA
SENATE BILL
No.
69
Session of
2021
INTRODUCED BY LANGERHOLC, MARTIN, AUMENT, STEFANO, J. WARD,
ARNOLD, GORDNER, MENSCH, YAW, BAKER AND SANTARSIERO,
JANUARY 20, 2021
REFERRED TO LABOR AND INDUSTRY, JANUARY 20, 2021
AN ACT
Establishing Recovery-to-work as a pilot program within the
Department of Labor and Industry; and providing for local
recovery-to-work pilot programs, for incentives to encourage
business participation and for powers and duties of the
Department of Labor and Industry.
TABLE OF CONTENTS
Chapter 1. Preliminary Provisions
Section 101. Short title.
Section 102. Definitions.
Chapter 3. Recovery-to-Work
Section 301. Program established.
Section 302. Participation in Recovery-to-work.
Section 303. Application and approval process.
Section 304. Program operation.
Chapter 7. Incentives
Section 701. Business partner incentives.
Chapter 9. Performance Evaluation and Reporting
Section 901. Performance evaluation system.
Section 902. Annual Report.
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Section 903. Final report.
Section 904. Report contents.
Chapter 21. Miscellaneous Provisions
Section 2101. Effective date.
The General Assembly of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania
hereby enacts as follows:
CHAPTER 1
PRELIMINARY PROVISIONS
Section 101. Short title.
This act shall be known and may be cited as the Recovery-to-
work Act.
Section 102. Definitions.
The following words and phrases when used in this act shall
have the meanings given to them in this section unless the
context clearly indicates otherwise:
"Board." A board established under section 101 of the
Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act (Public Law 113-128, 29
U.S.C. ยง 3122).
"Business partner." A business entity authorized to do
business in this Commonwealth.
"Department." The Department of Labor and Industry of the
Commonwealth.
"Educational institution." The term includes:
(1) Postsecondary career and technical centers and
colleges of technology accredited by the Department of
Education.
(2) Community colleges as established under Article XIX-
A of the act of March 10, 1949 (P.L.30, No.14), known as the
Public School Code of 1949, or the act of August 24, 1963
(P.L.1132, No.484), known as the Community College Act of
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1963.
(3) Private licensed schools regulated under the act of
December 15, 1986 (P.L.1585, No.174), known as the Private
Licensed Schools Act.
"Individuals in recovery." Individuals diagnosed with and
recovering from a drug or alcohol substance use disorder.
"Local pilot program." A local recovery-to-work pilot
program under Chapter 3.
"Local workforce development board." A local workforce
development board established in accordance with section 107 of
the Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act.
"Participating agencies." Include:
(1) The Department of Health of the Commonwealth.
(2) The Department of Community and Economic Development
of the Commonwealth.
(3) The Department of Drug and Alcohol Programs of the
Commonwealth.
(4) The Department of Human Services of the
Commonwealth.
(5) The Department of Corrections of the Commonwealth.
(6) The Pennsylvania Board of Probation and Parole.
(7) The Pennsylvania Commission on Crime and
Delinquency.
"Program partners." Entities that participate in a local
recovery-to-work pilot program.
"Recovery-to-work." The program established in section
301(a).
"Support services provider." An entity that provides drug
and alcohol treatment or recovery supports.
CHAPTER 3
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RECOVERY-TO-WORK
Section 301. Program established.
(a) Establishment.--Recovery-to-work is established as a
pilot program within the department.
(b) Funding sources.--To implement this act, the department
may utilize any of the following:
(1) Money deposited in the Reemployment Fund.
(2) Existing money appropriated to the department, if
the use of the money for Recovery-to-work is consistent with
law.
(3) Money appropriated to any participating agency for
Recovery-to-work.
(c) Notice.--Upon the initial appropriation of sufficient
money to carry out the provisions of this act or a determination
by the department that sufficient money is available from
another existing source to carry out the provisions of this act,
the department shall transmit notice of the appropriation to the
Legislative Reference Bureau for publication in the Pennsylvania
Bulletin.
(d) Administration.--Recovery-to-work shall be administered
by the department to empower local workforce development boards,
support services providers, business partners and participating
agencies to collaboratively develop innovative local recovery-
to-work pilot programs to do all the following:
(1) Provide individuals in recovery with career
development opportunities and work experience.
(2) Provide individuals in recovery with employability
and career readiness skill training as identified by the
department in consultation with the Department of Education.
(3) Provide individuals in recovery with support
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services for their continued recovery.
(4) Provide local workforce development boards with the
funding necessary to support program partners and business
partners implementing innovative local pilot programs.
(5) Provide program partners with informational
resources to help them conduct successful local pilot
programs.
(6) Seek to identify other funding sources, including
Federal grants, which may support local pilot programs.
Section 302. Participation in Recovery-to-work.
(a) Eligibility.--A local workforce development board shall
be eligible to apply for funding. The department shall establish
priority workforce areas based on substance use and unemployment
statistics.
(b) Guidelines.--The department, in consultation with
participating agencies, shall develop guidelines that specify
the requirements for participation in Recovery-to-work.
(c) Occupational focus.--Local recovery-to-work pilot
programs must be focused on providing individuals in recovery
with job training and work experience that will prepare
individuals for continued success for job opportunities that
exist in their local workforce development areas.
Section 303. Application and approval process.
(a) Application.--An eligible local workforce development
board under section 302(a) may submit an application to the
department requesting approval for participation in Recovery-to-
work.
(b) Application requirements.--A completed application must
describe the proposed local recovery-to-work pilot program in
the form and manner prescribed by the department. An application
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must include all of the following:
(1) A list of program partners, including participation
by a support services provider and a declaration of interest
by at least two business partners. The program partners may
include educational institutions, nonprofit business-support
entities, job seeker support entities and economic
development agencies.
(2) A description of how the proposed local pilot
program will meet the guidelines under section 302(b).
(3) A projection of costs associated with the proposed
local pilot program, including an enumeration of
opportunities to leverage other funding and programming
resources.
(4) Information on occupations that will be the focus of
the proposed local pilot program, including data on local
demand.
(5) Information on industry-recognized credentials or
certifications awarded to program participants upon
completion.
(6) Documentation of interest by a business partner that
plans to receive the incentive under section 701.
(7) A start date for the proposed local pilot program.
(8) A list of clear objectives and measurable goals that
the proposed local pilot program will seek to achieve.
(9) Documentation of an agreement among the program
partners describing the role of each program partner within
the proposed local pilot program and the expectations that
each program partner agrees to fulfill.
(c) Approval process.--
(1) The department, in consultation with participating
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agencies and the board as needed, shall approve up to seven
local recovery-to-work pilot programs for participation in
Recovery-to-work in the first year after the effective date
of this act.
(2) Priority must be given to a proposed local pilot
program demonstrating one or more of the following
characteristics:
(i) Substantial program integration across
educational levels, including use of multiple components
identified in the department guidelines under section
302(b).
(ii) An ability to leverage other funding and
programming resources.
(iii) A commitment from one or more business
partners to provide preferred interviews to individuals
completing the local pilot program.
(iv) Capability to provide exposure to high-priority
or in-demand occupations as identified by the department.
(d) Contractual relationship.--Within 30 days of the
completion of the approval process, the department shall enter
into a contract with each local workforce development board
approved for participation in Recovery-to-work. The contract
shall require the signatories to provide the services described
in the approved application from money appropriated or
distributed for this purpose or from money identified by the
participating agencies in accordance with section 301(d)(6).
(e) Termination and replacement.--The department, in
consultation with participating agencies and the board as
needed, may terminate a local recovery-to-work pilot program for
failure to comply with program requirements. Consistent with the
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process in subsection (c), a replacement local pilot program may
be approved.
Section 304. Program operation.
(a) Cooperative management.--In collaboration with the
participating agencies and the board, the department shall:
(1) Manage the operation of Recovery-to-work.
(2) Establish an application process.
(3) Enumerate outcome-based metrics by which local
recovery-to-work pilot programs will be evaluated under
chapter 9.
(4) Institute guidelines and procedures as necessary to
implement Recovery-to-work. The guidelines must enumerate
allowed and disallowed expenses and provide that
administrative expenses over 5% shall be disallowed.
(b) Informational resources.--In collaboration with the
participating agencies and the board, the department shall
provide informational resources to help program partners conduct
successful local recovery-to-work pilot programs.
(c) Distribution.--The department, in consultation with
participating agencies and the board, as needed, shall determine
the distribution of available money from money appropriated for
the purposes of this act.
CHAPTER 7
INCENTIVES
Section 701. Business partner incentives.
(a) Eligibility.--Subject to the availability of funding
under subsection (c), if, at the end of a training period, a
business partner hires an individual for a job opening, the
business partner is eligible to receive an incentive payment in
the amount of $1,250 after the individual remains employed an
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average of 35 hours per week for 12 consecutive weeks.
(b) Application.--A business partner may apply for an
incentive payment under subsection (a). The application form
shall be prescribed and furnished by the department and bear the
notarized signature of the applicant.
(c) Funding.--
(1) Incentive payments under subsection (a) shall be
paid from money appropriated for payment.
(2) Fifteen percent of the total amount of money
authorized for a fiscal year shall be reserved for business
partners with fewer than 100 employees. If the reserved
amount is not committed by April 30 of each year, the
reserved amount shall be available to business partners that
have at least 100 employees.
(d) Penalty.--A business partner that falsifies an
application for an incentive payment shall be required to refund
the department the total amount of the incentive payment
awarded.
CHAPTER 9
PERFORMANCE EVALUATION AND REPORTING
Section 901. Performance evaluation system.
The department shall develop and implement an evaluation and
performance improvement system which does the following:
(1) Collects critical information on an annual basis or
more frequently as determined by the department, including:
(i) Skill training being received by individuals.
(ii) Challenges foreseen by business partners.
(iii) Local recovery-to-work pilot program best
practices.
(iv) Retention rate of individuals employed as a
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result of a local pilot program.
(2) Defines the benefits of Recovery-to-work and its
effects on business partners and individuals in recovery.
Section 902. Annual report.
Within 60 days of the end of a fiscal year in which a local
recovery-to-work pilot program is in operation, the department,
participating agencies and the board shall jointly submit a
report regarding the implementation of Recovery-to-work and the
local pilot programs over the previous fiscal year to the
following:
(1) The Governor.
(2) The Auditor General.
(3) The chairperson and minority chairperson of the
Appropriations Committee of the Senate.
(4) The chairperson and minority chairperson of the
Appropriations Committee of the House of Representatives.
(5) The chairperson and minority chairperson of the
Education Committee of the Senate.
(6) The chairperson and minority chairperson of the
Education Committee of the House of Representatives.
(7) The chairperson and minority chairperson of the
Labor and Industry Committee of the Senate.
(8) The chairperson and minority chairperson of the
Labor and Industry Committee of the House of Representatives.
Section 903. Final report.
Within six months of the expiration of local recovery-to-work
pilot programs, the department, participating agencies and the
board shall jointly submit a report regarding the implementation
of Recovery-to-work and the local pilot programs to the
following:
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(1) The Governor.
(2) The Auditor General.
(3) The chairperson and minority chairperson of the
Appropriations Committee of the Senate.
(4) The chairperson and minority chairperson of the
Appropriations Committee of the House of Representatives.
(5) The chairperson and minority chairperson of the
Education Committee of the Senate.
(6) The chairperson and minority chairperson of the
Education Committee of the House of Representatives.
(7) The chairperson and minority chairperson of the
Labor and Industry Committee of the Senate.
(8) The chairperson and minority chairperson of the
Labor and Industry Committee of the House of Representatives.
Section 904. Report contents.
(a) General rule.--In addition to information or analysis
required by the department, in consultation with participating
agencies and the board, as needed, the interim and final reports
must include information about each local recovery-to-work pilot
program, including whether:
(1) The local pilot program achieved the clear
objectives and measurable goals proposed under section 303(b)
(8).
(2) An analysis of each local pilot program according to
the outcome-based metrics enumerated by the department under
section 304(a)(3).
(3) The number of participating individuals in recovery.
(4) The amount expended.
(b) Best practices.--The reports must identify best
practices observed from among the most successful local
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recovery-to-work pilot programs.
CHAPTER 21
MISCELLANEOUS PROVISIONS
Section 2101. Effective date.
This act shall take effect immediately.
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