Mr. Taylor. Well, I am delighted you asked that question. The
12 percent is programmed to occur over about 4 or 5 fiscal years.
So we have time to make the personnel adjustments. We expect
that there will be some attrition over this period. But as we rede-
sign the agency, it is with the intent of putting on more frontline
workers. We have a plan, a tentative plan, that will result, actu-
ally, in fewer people in the agency, but more people on the front-
Mr. Penny. Well, that sounds exciting.
Mr. Taylor. Yes, sir, it is exciting.
Mr. Penny. I should know, but I will ask it just to clarify, are
DVOPs and LVERs always collocated with local employment serv-
Mr. Taylor. Not always. Up to 25 percent of DVOP's time is
usually spent in outreach and going out and talking to employers
about jobs for veterans.
Mr. Penny. But are they officially attached to the local employ-
ment service office in every case?
Mr. Taylor. Yes, sir.
Mr. Penny. It is just a good number of them are out on the road
and it is just a tangential relationship with the office?
Mr. Taylor. Yes, sir.
Mr. Penny. So as we go through the reorganization of our em-
ployment services offices, you don't see any fundamental change in
DVOPs and LVERs with the employment service office?
Mr. Taylor. No, I don't see a fundamental change, but I do see
a change in the responsibilities of the DVOPs and LVERs. We feel
that we probably should be doing case management for the more
Mr. Penny. You don't feel that that is being provided now? Is
that something that is being sort of shoved off on the other employ-
ment service personnel?
Mr. Taylor. No, the way we are thinking about redesigning the
duties and responsibilities is we will provide additional training to
those people who don't have that capability now to do the kind of
in-depth counseling that we think may be needed out there.
Mr. Penny. Are we retaining the VETS's training center in Colo-
Mr. Taylor. Yes, sir. As a matter of fact, we are going through
a needs assessment right now in regard to the types of courses that
should be taught out there, and case management is one of the
courses that will be taught out there. We want to begin a customer
focus orientation by every one of our employees and so we are
going to be developing total quality management courses out there.
Mr. Penny. What role do you have in determining the relation-
ship of a local employment service office with the nearby military
base? And what I am getting at here is the transition assistance
program and the need to bring in some employment service person-
nel to participate in that transition assistance process.
Has there been a directive to employment services offices that
they do some outreach to the military base to make sure that in
every case we have the proper sort of relationship established?
Mr. Taylor. Well, in the seven months I have been on this job,
I have done extensive travel
Mr. Penny. My point is, who begins this? Do we have a base
commander to reach out to the employment service or do we do it
the other way?
Mr. Taylor. It is happening both ways. In my visits to South
CaroUna and Cahfomia where we have a concentration of bases
and people are being asked to leave these bases, I have talked to
base commanders and I have talked to those who are in charge of
employment services and the relationship is just marvelous. I
couldn't be happier. I think that everybody is aboard and everybody
is satisfied. Perhaps some of our TAP classes may be too large, but
I see no problem in the relationship between the commanders and
the civilian heads of employment agencies.
Mr. Penny. And lastly, what is your relationship with the OJT
program that is currently under way?
Mr. Taylor. SMOCTA? Is thatâ€” okay. We came up here a few
weeks ago and we testified on TAP and we testified on SMOCTA.
Based on that hearing, we did raise one problem and that is the
obligation of the funds that are left that will be left if there are any
Mr. Penny. You want the continued authority to use those
Mr. Taylor. Yes, but based on my discussions with the VA and
the DOD, it appears that we have a good opportunity to obligate
all of that money
Mr. Penny. In this fiscal year?
Mr. Taylor. Yes, sir, and it is an amazing thing that is occurring
here. This program is simply taking off.
Mr. Penny. It doesn't surprise me because it seems to me that
with very little outreach that program would have very great ap-
peal. And I think what we needed was a learning curve and we
have now arrived. Does that mean that we now need more money
for that program to keep it going?
Mr. Taylor. Well, my own opinion is that TAP and SMOCTA
should both be institutionalized. We expect 271,000 people to leave
the military in fiscal 1997, 1998, and in the outyears after the mili-
tary stabilizes. That is almost as many people as left the military
in 1985 or 1987 before we started the so-called "downsizing."
Mr. Penny. As compared to Â£ui earlier OJT program for military
personnel, do you think the design of this program is going to re-
sult in a more cost-effective situation? In other words, we have sort
of a repayment rate to employers that is spread out over time. It
really doesn't fi-ont-load the hiring of those workers. It is more of
a reimbursement process. Is that going to protect against the sort
of abuse where they can take the money and dump the employee?
Mr. Taylor. No, in my visits I have also visited employers who
have hired veterans under the SMOCTA program. In South Da-
kota, of all places, I visited a ship builder. He has hired five or six
veterans under the SMOCTA program and he was absolutely de-
lighted with these people. We will always have people coming out
of the Army who have an infantry MOS or an MOS that is not eas-
ily converted to the civilian sector, and so there will also be a need
The employers are not defrauding us in any way. We think that
this is a good program that is being used. Employers are telling us
that some of their training programs go beyond 18 months.
SMOCTA hmits us to 18 months and so we need to address that.
Mr. Penny. Thank you. I appreciate your responses.
Mr. Chairman, thank you for indulging me with a couple of extra
Mr. Montgomery. Thank you very much for your in-depth ques-
The Defense Department spent a lot of money on people coming
out of the service. Are you getting any defense money on veterans'
Mr. Taylor. Well, Congressman, if I understand your question
correctly, we have bases that are closing, and civilian employees
are being adversely impacted by the loss of their civilian jobs. On
some of these bases we may have a TAP program for military peo-
ple, and yet civilian employees are losing their jobs. Can these ci-
vilian employees cross the street and go into a TAP program and
learn how to do an interview and write a resume, et cetera? My
response is, not at this time. We cannot work with the civilian Fed-
eral employees that are losing their jobs.
Our task with TAP is aimed at helping young men and women
and their spouses who are about to leave the military. We are will-
ing to sit down and talk with the Department of Defense and with
Congress about the expansion of the TAP program to others, but
at this time, no, we are not getting any money from DOD to do any
additional types of TAP.
Mr. Montgomery. Chairman Ford said that he would work with
us on H.R. 4050 and that there would be no problems. They will
not get in our jurisdiction. If you have any problems, let us know.
We can work through that.
Mr. Taylor. Yes, sir, there is one comment that Mr. Hutchinson
made during his opening statement that I would like to respond to
in regard to the advisory committee.
During my briefing when I started to work at Labor, that was
one of the questions that I asked. Why had not this advisory com-
mittee ever met? I got a myriad of different answers and so I de-
cided I really don't care what happened in the past, I want that
advisory committee up and running now. And so I wrote a memo-
randum to Secretary Reich and I asked him to allow us to get this
advisory committee up and running. And he wrote back and said,
yes, go ahead and do that. This is in his character. He has been
supporting us all the way over there.
The current membership of that advisory committee had a 2-year
limit. The limit has just expired. We are now accepting nomina-
tions. We have gone out to the VSOs and others and asked for
nominations to become members of the new advisory committee.
We are going through those suggestions now, and hopefully I will
send some names up to the Secretary as a recommendation for this
membership within the next month or so. Maybe in the fall we will
hold our first meeting ever.
Mr. Montgomery. Today I will be introducing a resolution
known as Veterans' Employment Day and I will talk to other Mem-
bers about cosponsoring this measure.
Mr. Taylor. Thank you very much for that, sir.
Mr. Montgomery. The problem is you have to get a majority of
the House to sign it to get it out, and you might have to do some
work on it, if you hke the idea.
Mr. Taylor. Yes, sir, we will help you in any way we can with
Mr. Montgomery. Thank you very much. There are no further
questions. Thank you for being here. You have been very, very
Mr. Taylor. Thank you, sir.
Mr. Montgomery. Our next witnesses will be Mr. Ron Drach,
Disabled American Veterans, who has testified before this commit-
tee many, many times, and Mrs. Brenda Glenn, Vietnam Veterans
I would ask the gentleman from DAV to start.
STATEMENTS OF RONALD W. DRACH, NATIONAL EMPLOY-
MENT DIRECTOR, DISABLED AMERICAN VETERANS; BRENDA
GLENN, CHAIR, ECONOMIC AFFAIRS COMMITTEE, VIETNAM
VETERANS OF AMERICA
STATEMENT OF RONALD W. DRACH
Mr. Drach. Thank you very much, Mr. Chairman.
It is a pleasure to be here before you this morning. I think it is
very fortuitous that you had the hearings on TAP, TDAP, and
SMOCTA a couple of weeks ago because you cannot move forward
without looking at two sets of hearings in concert because TAP and
DTAP is so integral to the employment service and what is happen-
ing to our future veterans.
I am going to restrict my comments to a few areas. One is H.R.
4050, the Reemployment Act that has been discussed this morning.
And H.R. 4050 is not a veteran's bill, although it may be construed
in large part to be an antiveteran's bill and by not including vet-
eran-specific language in that bill, particularly with the dislocated
worker, and the waiver provision, which I will talk about in a few
minutes, it can be construed as being antiveteran.
I understand â€” I think I understood Mr. Taylor to say that the
military servicemen who are being discharged would be considered
dislocated workers. Without specific language, I don't think they
will be. I go back to CETA and JPTA and other specific programs
over the last 20 years, that without specific veteran language, vet-
erans were not targeted. And I don't think they are going to be tar-
geted under Title L
Who more is being permanently laid off in the country today
than those service members who have completed 14 or 15 or 16
years and are being caught in the downsizing and they are not
going to be served? And I suggest that those service members be
accorded the same level and intensity of services that the Reem-
ployment Act intends to provide for nonmilitary laid off dislocated
And if you look around, Mr. Chairman, there are a lot of pro-
grams out there to address the layoffs of civilian employees in-
cluded in the Department of Defense. There is a program that the
Department of Defense employees who are losing their jobs because
of downsizing are getting priority in reemployment in the Federal
Government and there are all kinds of programs and there are no
reemployment programs short of SMOCTA, and we talked about
that two weeks ago, that are designed to help ex-service members.
Given the history of the emplo5anent services for veterans, we
recommend that any future system, whether it is a redesign of the
current system or a totally new system, must include a portion for
veteran's preference and a priority of services for service veterans.
And I say that predicated on the data that may not be the best
data but it is the only data.
Vietnam veterans are doing relatively well but there are some
data that show when you compared Vietnam veterans even today
to nonveterans of the same age group, the Vietnam-era veterans
have higher unemployment rates than their peers. And it is tragic
to say that, 21 years after our last troops were pulled out.
Those data lead me to conclude that it was a disadvantage to
have served in the military forces during the Vietnam-era because
we are still suffering a higher unemployment rate than our age
We can't let that happen to future generations of our service
members and veterans. There was a study released 22 years ago
by the Kirchner group and many of the things in that study, and
some of them are highlighted in my written testimony, are as true
today as they were 22 years ago. Now instead of the administration
developing and implementing policies, they want to dilute them by
giving the Secretary authority to waive chapter 21.
Mr. Hutchison, you couldn't have been more on target. If they
are not going on use it, why do they need it? If by waiving it, as
the ETA gentleman gave the note that it is not going to affect the
general purpose or the major purpose of the program, then what
is it going to do? What exactly does that waiver do?
I can tell you from my 20-some years experience working in that
area that it is going to make a major, major impact and detrimen-
tal impact on the way that the veterans are served. Granted, Mr.
Taylor may have the ear of Secretary Reich right now, and Sec-
retary Reich may consult with Mr. Taylor on this, but Mr. Taylor
may not be around 2 years from now.
So while I am not disputing Mr. Taylor's thoughts or comments
on this, that is a dangerous provision to put into the statute to give
the Secretary of Labor authority to waive that law. And it may not
be Secretary Reich that waives it. It may be some other Secretary
in the future. We cannot let that happen.
Secretary Reich responded to a concern that we addressed re-
garding the one-stop centers back in March. And I will quote part
of that letter back to me. Quote, the Reemployment Act would meet
the needs and desires of our Nation's veterans.
I have not seen anything in the Reemplo5mient Act that comes
an5rwhere remotely near meeting the needs and desires of our Na-
Mr. Montgomery, I want to thank you for your introduction of a
bill that would transfer the veterans' emplojrment and training
service to the VA. If we really and truly want to reinvent VETS,
let's transfer it to the VA.
The advisory committee, Mr. Chairman, I worked on that bill,
and I have been trying to get that committee established with Mr.
Penny for almost 3 years now, and we still have not met. Again,
I appreciate Mr. Taylor's comments on this, but I don't think Mr.
Taylor should have had to go to the Secretary to ask permission.
The statute is pretty clear: Within 90 days of March 22, 1991, the
Secretary will convene that committee. That will be 3 years old
next week and we still have not had one meeting.
Mr. Chairman, thank you for your attention to these issues and
I will be happy to answer any questions.
[The prepared statement of Mr. Drach, with attached letter, ap-
pears on p. 26.]
Mr. Montgomery. Thank you very much for your strong testi-
General Taylor is still in the room, and I want to compliment
him. Some of our witnesses from the government testify and then
run out the door. I don't like that. I think witnesses ought to stay
around and hear what other persons have to say, especially the
government witnesses. General Taylor, I appreciate you staying.
I have some written questions I would like our government offi-
cials to answer for the record. We will get these to you.
(See p. 83.)
Mr. Montgomery. At this time, the chair would like to recognize
STATEMENT OF BRENDA GLENN
Ms. Glenn. Thank you, Mr. Chairman and Members of the sub-
committee. I would like to introduce myself first of all. I am Brenda
Glenn, the national economic affairs chair for the Vietnam Veter-
ans of America, and I am a DVOP for the State of Indiana. This
issue is close to my heart.
Before I start my official testimony, I did want to respond to a
few things that Secretary Taylor said. I spoke with him several
times and I am very impressed with him. And although he sug-
gests that Secretary Reich is very supportive of veterans' employ-
ment and training, those of us in the field who are under the gun
have not seen evidence of that. We have to wonder why it took al-
most a year for Secretary Taylor to be selected. There were many
rumors in the field that that position was not going to be filled at
all. It makes us wonder just how supportive of veterans he really
We feel that cutbacks in the staff of DDL VETS will reduce what
little teeth DOL VETS presently has, which is not much. Vietnam
Veterans of America welcomes this opportunity to present our
views on the Department of Labor and its programs to serve the
needs of veterans. Because of the gravity of the situation and the
threat it poses, we will focus upon the Reemployment Act of 1994,
H.R. 4050, and the choice it offers for veterans' emplojonent and
training services through State emplojnnent security agencies.
The first is the voluntary one-stop career centers that would
allow waivers on specific statutory and regulatory requirements
that protect services for veterans. That would be detrimental to
veterans if that is allowed.
The second, a rewrite of chapters 41 and 42 of title 38 United
States Code, meets the objectives of the National Performance Re-
view in reducing the number of Federal employees, but ignores
needs of veterans.
No matter which option a State adopts, Vietnam-era veterans
lose. This is another attempt by the fourth branch of the govern-
ment, the Federal agencies, to overturn the laws of the land and
decisions of its courts. These attempts by agencies will continue
until Congress takes action, which we hope will be before the last
veterans' program is gone and the last veteran is fired.
Yet 42 use Section 2000 (e)(ll) states that nothing contained in
this subchapter shall be construed to repeal or modify any Federal,
State, territorial, or local law creating special rights or preference
for veterans. DOE â€” I am sorry â€” DOL seems consistently unaware
that women and minorities have served in the military in signifi-
cant numbers since before the Vietnam War. The attempt to elimi-
nate the requirement to hire veterans in these positions under the
banner of fairness to women is an indication of how few veterans
fill upper echelons of the Department of Labor.
Veterans preference in Federal hiring, despite the statute it
stands on, has been allowed to erode since it came under attack as
a blind for hiring white males in the 1970s. In the civil service, job
applicants are rated or tested and then a certified list is sent to the
hiring authority with instructions to hire fi-om the top three. Fed-
eral employers are firequently allowed to ignore the law. GAO has
found that 41 percent of the time, when a veteran leaves the list,
the certificates are returned unused or to be put in simple terms,
the veteran is just not hired.
As early as 1977, agencies admitted that they sometimes used
questionable procedures to obtain women who cannot be reached on
registers. These include requesting and returning certificates un-
used until veterans who are blocking the register have been hired
by another agency or for other reasons are no longer blocking the
Mr. Chairman, we are at the onset of an emplo5anent crisis for
Vietnam-era veterans. Primarily not the difficult to employ, but
those who have worked steadily for decades. In the Federal Gov-
ernment alone, the Office of Personnel Management reports that
for fiscal year 1992, veterans have lost 41,699 Federal positions
while nonveterans in the Federal work force gained 61,819 posi-
tions. That doesn't sound like veterans' preference to me. What
0PM does at the Federal level is taken as permission to do the
same at the State, coimty, and local levels.
The veterans work as civilian employees of the military and the
defense industry way out of proportion to the general population.
They were hired because of their abilities and their discipline as
I see that my time is almost up; I would really like to finish this
thought, if I may.
In addition, the downsizing of the military loses its value as a
budget-saving device if it results in high numbers of released mili-
tary personnel receiving unemployment benefits and becoming part
of the long-term jobless population. If we throw them into the same
heap where so many Vietnam-era veterans still remain after giving
up after years of un- and underemployment, we will waste a second
generation of human resources.
Why is it that the Reemployment Act and DOL's OPPOR com-
mittee recommendation ehminates veterans' employment programs
and toss their staff into the jobless line when they are so badly
needed at their desks?
Vietnam Veterans of America is opposed to changes to current
law that would change the veteran requirements for any position
described in chapter 41. There are now more women veterans than
at any time in history and we suggest that DOL take advantage
of their considerable talent. Any employer that finds itself in this
category bind is not looking hard enough.
In Subsection 4100, the finding of Congress states that as long
as unemployment and underemployment continue as a serious
problem among disabled veterans and Vietnam-era veterans, alle-
viating unemployment and underemployment among such veterans
is a national responsibility. The United States Department of
Labor is trying to convince everyone that it is no longer a serious
I have got more, but I want to give you a chance to ask ques-
tions, so if you have anything to ask me, I would be happy to an-
[The prepared statement of Ms. Glenn appears on p. 36.]
Mr. Hutchinson (presiding). Thank you, and I will echo the
chairman, who had to excuse himself for a few minutes. I mean his
comment about the very strong statement, and I thank you for both
of your testimonies. Since I am it right now, they are all handing
me the questions so let me share with you a couple of them.
One of the VETS' ad hoc teams has suggested that the residency
requirement for State directors be eliminated. What is your atti-
tude toward that recommendation? Would your organizations sup-
port that? If not, why not? Either or both of you.
Mr. Drach. Mr. Chairman, the DAV has long supported that rec-
ommendation. We have a resolution calling for the elimination of
the residency requirement that goes back I can't tell you how many
years. We made some headway with that I believe in Public Law
100-323 that provided for a waiver of the residency requirement
under certain circumstances. I don't know if that waiver has ever
been utilized. I don't believe that it has. We would welcome that
deletion of that residency requirement with open arms.
Mr. Hutchinson. Let me just address this to the panel as a
whole, too. Which of the reinvention proposals made by the ad hoc
teams would your organizations like to see immediately imple-
mented and which one might you oppose?
Mr. Drach. I haven't had a chance to review them all. If you put
the documents on top of one another, it is 18 or 20 inches of docu-
ments and honestly I have not had a chance to look at them all.
I think there are some good ideas emanating fi-om this, and I want
to give Mr. Taylor credit for bringing these groups together to look
Ms. Glenn. I also have not had a chance to go through all of the
material, but I would be happy to send you our response in writing.
(See p. 103.)
Mr. Hutchinson. I think that would be very good, and Mr. Tay-
lor is also nodding that he would appreciate that input.
And while we are talking about the input, let me just address
this question to both of you. How much consultation has there been
with the VSOs in the drafting of and formulation of H.R. 4050 and