Late last month, DirectEmployers partner the National Association of State Workforce Agencies (NASWA), hosted its 77th Annual Conference in Denver, Colorado, to share innovative ideas, policies and best practices to be implemented into their state employment services. This year the organization was proud to have the U.S. Secretary of Labor, Thomas Perez, as well as Colorado Governor, John Hickenlooper, speak during the first day of the conference regarding the workforce agencies’ roles in the development of the national economy. Below is an excerpt from the ‘NASWA Bulletin’ on September 27, 2013.

NASWA was honored to have U.S. Secretary of Labor Thomas Perez and Colorado Governor John Hickenlooper speak to both NASWA and NGA on the first day of the Conference. They discussed the vital role state workforce agencies play in nation’s economy.

U.S. Secretary of Labor Thomas Perez speaks to NASWA and NGA members during the luncheon on the first day of the 77th Annual Conference.

Secretary Perez cited his time as the head of the Maryland Department of Labor, Licensing and Regulations, and the valuable perspective it gave him in his new role as the U.S. Labor Secretary. Additionally, Secretary Perez told those in attendance he understands the value of state workforce agencies play in serving customers, and “gets it” about the reduction of the Governor’s Reserve of Workforce Investment Act funds to five percent from the statutorily authorized 15 percent as stated in law. NASWA was extremely pleased to hear the Secretary’s comments! It is NASWA’s policy that the Governor’s Reserve should be restored to 15 percent. However, the Administration’s officially-stated policy still is the 7.5% proposed in the President’s fiscal year 2014 budget.

NASWA and its members also honored those who sought to improve the workforce system over the past year, with NASWA’s Salute to the Leadership Awards.

NASWA’s Board of Directors and Committees presented several awards to recognize individual and team successes in the workforce system.

NASWA thanks all those who attended this year’s Annual Conference and will be highlighting various panels and workshops in the coming weeks.

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