New state agency would increase access to apprenticeship programs in Colorado
DENVER, CO– Legislation that would create a state apprenticeship agency to oversee, promote and ensure the quality of apprenticeship programs in Colorado today passed the House Business Affairs and Labor committee by a vote of 8-5.
“State apprenticeship agencies like the one we’re creating help people learn the skills they need to enter and advance in a trade and ensure they get the training they signed up for,” said Rep. Tom Sullivan, D-Centennial. “We can build back stronger by making sure that every worker has access to the tools they need to thrive.”
“So many Coloradans would jump at the chance to enter an apprenticeship program, so let’s make it easier for them to do so and improve the quality of these programs at the same time,” said Rep. David Ortiz, D-Littleton. “This bill would help create jobs by increasing access to critical skills training programs and by expanding these programs to new and emerging industries.”
HB21-1007, sponsored by Representatives Tom Sullivan and David Ortiz, would establish a state apprenticeship agency. The agency will collaborate with the US Department of Labor to register and oversee apprenticeship programs, determine standards for apprenticeship programs, and ensure these standards are being met. It will work to promote apprenticeship programs so that more Coloradans can access these critical training opportunities, which to-date have jump-started the careers of nearly 2 million Americans in the last decade.
Because Colorado does not have a state apprenticeship agency, apprenticeship programs are currently registered with the US Department of Labor. This new state agency would work with apprenticeship programs to provide technical assistance to help them create and meet standards and provide more flexibility to ensure apprentices are learning the skills they need to advance in their trade. Twenty-five other states have state apprenticeship councils.