FY 2018 Omnibus Provides Mixed Bag of Funding for Workforce Data

Christina Pena
March 22, 2018

Late last night, U.S. Congressional leaders released their final Omnibus spending package for Fiscal Year (FY) 2018. Funding for workforce data-related programs faired about the same as last year. Here is a quick review of the numbers.

  • Level funding for the Workforce Data Quality Initiative --$6 million.
     
  • Level funding for State Longitudinal Data Systems--$32 million.
     
  • Increased funding for the Institute of Education Sciences-- $613 million, which is $8 million above FY 2017. 
     
  • Increased funding for the Bureau of Labor Statistics-- $612 million, which is $3 million above FY 2017, with $65 million of those funds designated for the Employment Security Administration account in the Unemployment Trust Fund.
     
  • Decreased funding for Workforce Information Grants and E-tools--$63 million, which is $5 million below FY 2017 funding. 
     
  • Increased funding for the U.S. Census Bureau--$2.8 billion, an increase of $1.3 billion over last year in part because of the 2020 Decennial Census.

The results provide a mixed bag for workforce data. With the momentum behind evidence-based policymaking, supporters of better information for evaluators and consumers should push for greater funding in FY2019. The President’s budget proposes zeroing out both WDQI and SLDS grant programs, which would run contrary to the budget’s call for greater government coordination on the use of data for performance reporting and evidence. (See WDQC’s previous blog for more information on the President’s FY 2019 request.)

The House just passed the FY 2018 funding package and the Senate is poised to approve the Omnibus by the Friday deadline. WDQC will continue to monitor and advocate for improved funding for key workforce data programs. For an analysis of broader education and workforce funding in the FY 2018 Omnibus, visit the National Skills Coalition’s Skills Blog.

For states that have received WDQI grants in the past, please share your updated success stories by contacting WDQC: info@workforcedqc.org!

 

WDQC is a project of National Skills Coalition.