H.B. 2933 would amend the Neighborhood Improvement and Youth Employment Act to:
The Neighborhood Improvement and Youth Employment Act was enacted in 1994 and, with modifications, re-enacted in 1996, to provide summer and after school work opportunities to youths meeting certain income guidelines. Local governmental units, nonprofit private organizations, native American Indian tribes, and businesses may submit plans to the Department of Human Resources. These plans must identify work opportunities. The Department provides grants to selected entities. However, participating businesses must agree to pay at least 50 percent of wages and benefits of any youths employed. Program grants have been used to pay for labor and related costs associated with: the repair, maintenance, and renovation of essential community facilities; other community-related services; and assistance to low-income senior citizens. No more than 10 percent of amounts received from grants may be applied to administrative expenditures.
Funding for the program has been budgeted since FY 1995, with an initial appropriation of $100,000. The Governor recommended $70,000 for the program in FY 1999, the same amount that was appropriated for FY 1998. The House Appropriations Committee recommended an additional $30,000 for FY 1999, resulting in a total of $100,000.
The provisions of H.B. 2933 respond to several concerns identified by the Department of Human Resources in its 1998 annual report to the House Economic Development Committee. The Department recommended:
Proponents of the bill included: Representative Barbara Ballard; Blaine Finch, on behalf of the City Commission of Ottawa; and Laurie Rosenwasser, Executive Director of Harvest America Corporation. Written testimony in support of the bill was submitted by: Representative Janice Pauls; John Burke, Superintendent of Schools, Neodesha; and Richard Jackson, Executive Director of ECKAN (Ottawa).
The House Committee on Economic Development amended the bill to clarify that businesses could offer to program participants work activities other than those prescribed in existing law.
The Senate Committee on Commerce amended the bill to allow eligible youths attending any type of school (not only elementary and secondary school) to participate in the program.
1. *Supplemental notes are prepared by the Legislative Research Department and do not express legislative intent. The supplemental note and fiscal note for this bill may be accessed on the Internet at http://www.ink.org/public/legislative/fulltext-bill.html.