Lee amendments seek job creation, education accessibility, work-life balance

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Tuesday, Sen. Mike Lee filed three amendments to a Senate bill being considered this week that would extend the time people have to collect unemployment insurance beyond six months. The amendments continue the senator’s push to enact solutions to what he defined as problems in the Obama economy by focusing on job creation, accessibility of higher education and training, and improving work-life balance.

The first amendment Lee introduced is modeled after his Transportation Empowerment Act, S. 1702, and would significantly reduce the administrative and regulatory burdens the federal government places on states’ use of transportation funding. Under this proposal, states could respond more quickly to the needs of citizens, start and finish projects sooner, and spend less money to complete them – all while creating and maintaining good jobs.

“Americans aren’t looking for unemployment insurance, they are looking for employment,” Lee said. “The Democrats’ solution is to keep people tied to unemployment programs, rather than addressing the underlying problem. My amendment would lift unnecessary burdens government imposes and give states and businesses the freedom to invest, grow, and hire more workers.”

The second amendment Lee introduced is built on his Higher Education Reform and Opportunity Act, S. 1904, legislation that would open up new educational opportunities for many low-income and non-traditional students. The bill allows states to set up a new and parallel system for accrediting educational institutions, curricula, apprenticeships, programs, and even individual courses, which are then available to receive federal student loan money.

“In today’s economy, employers need individuals with specialized skills,” Lee said. “But the current accreditation system – which drives up costs and leaves behind many non-traditional students, like working parents – acts as a barrier for millions of Americans who need the education and training to fill those jobs. This amendment would make higher education and training more accessible and affordable to those who need it most.”

The third amendment he introduced is based on Lee’s Working Family Flexibility Act, S. 1623, which allows private-sector employees the same choice between comp time and overtime pay currently enjoyed by government employees.  Currently, federal law unfairly discriminates against these employees by prohibiting the use of comp time, forcing them to sacrifice family time for the family budget.

“For many families, especially with young children, their most precious commodity is time,” Lee said. “But today, federal labor laws restrict the way moms and dads and everyone else can use their time. This can lead to tough decisions about how many hours parents can work, or even if they’re able to work at all. My amendment would make that choice easier and help working families achieve the right balance.”

Submitted by the offices of Sen. Mike Lee

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  • D Hodja April 2, 2014 at 2:50 pm

    Is Lee with his smaller government but coming up with policy that requires more government, by chance, also offering us all free gov’t soft serve ice cream? Because I think he is actually qualified on soft serve albeit he is going to use donations by Jeremy Johnson to pull it off.

    • Brian April 3, 2014 at 9:24 am

      Did you even read the article? Pay close attention to the phrases like “allow states”, “significantly reduce the administrative and regulatory burdens the federal government places on states”, “states could respond more quickly”, “The bill allows states”, etc. Seems consistent with smaller, closer-to-home government to me. The federal government is easily 100x bigger and more powerful than ever imagined by the Founding Fathers. 90% of the money they spend and laws they pass are outside the scope of what the Constitution allows them.

  • Bub April 3, 2014 at 10:32 am

    Two word: recall election…

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