Finding that the state’s current systems are too difficult for people to understand and navigate, resulting in West Virginians falling through the cracks, the Task Force’s recommendations to Gov. Justice are to:
Make it Easier for Citizens to be Successful
Get State Agencies on the Same Page
- Create a common application to make it easier for citizens to enroll in services across organizations;
- Set up a workgroup to engineer case management referral and training support infrastructure;
- Expand Jobs and Hope case management services and train case managers to be familiar with all SNAP, TANF, federal and state financial aid, and core workforce programs;
- Preferably locate several services in one location;
- Pay for the expansion of case management through the Substance Use Disorder (SUD) Medicaid Waiver, maximizing federal funds.
- Develop a combined plan for West Virginia that will include, but not be limited to, Perkins, WIOA, Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF), and the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP); this is where the federal government is headed, which would make us a national leader;
- Establish shared metrics or goals that agencies are measured on that are important to the state;
- Have DHHR explore policy changes that drive accountability for benefit recipients to comply with job placement opportunities;
- Establish a strong state workforce development board that meets regularly with regional boards and creates a sense of accountability to the state.
Outreach to Business and Industry
- Develop a workgroup of agencies to assess duplicative expenditures and other budgetary efficiencies;
- Conduct asset mapping, including a real estate review and examination of shared location expenses.
The Task Force and its subcommittees – Data Sharing, Cross Training, Co-Enrollment, Agency Integration, and Employer Engagement – met regularly since June to find solutions that will more strongly align credentialed training programs at community and technical colleges with the state’s workforce development programs.
- Create incentives for employers to engage with the state and its partners;
- Adopt best practices from other states and organizations that could include the development of a West Virginia employer engagement toolkit;
- Prioritize strategic communications with employers, so they know what opportunities are available to them.