PESA was invited to sit on a roundtable hosted by Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX) April 16 to discuss The Education Freedom Scholarships and Opportunity Act (S. 634) This legislation seeks to expand vocational education opportunities for students by providing a federal tax credit to encourage individuals and businesses to donate to nonprofit scholarship funds.
The bill creates a new dollar-for-dollar, non-refundable tax credit for contributions from individuals and businesses to state-identified nonprofits called Scholarship Granting Organizations (SGOs) and Workforce Training Organizations (WTOs). SGOs and WTOs distribute these donations as scholarships, expanding students’ access to a variety of educational opportunities, which may include advanced, remedial and elective courses; private and home education; apprenticeships, industry certifications, concurrent and dual enrollment; tutoring; community colleges; summer and afterschool education programs, transportation, and more. Many of these programs would directly train individuals for technical positions in the oilfield services and equipment sector, where PESA Members are experiencing shortages in qualified individuals.
The roundtable took place at Texas State Technical College’s Rosenberg, TX campus in Fort Bend County. Tim Tarpley, Vice President Government Affairs, represented PESA at the event. Tarpley was able to speak directly with Sen. Cruz and discuss the sector’s need for skilled labor and how this type of workforce training would benefit PESA Member Companies. Tarpley was joined by representatives from dozens of local industries who are also experiencing similar workforce shortages, such as construction, welding, plumbing and electrical contracting.
PESA looks forward to continuing to work with Sen. Cruz to help solve work-shortage issues in the industry. For additional information on this event, please contact Tim Tarpley, Vice President Government Affairs.