Advocating for the workforce

NRCA supports legislation to improve workforce development

As the roofing industry continues to face workforce challenges, the need for effective strategies to address the concerns is vital. NRCA remains focused on advocating for innovative workforce development policies and continues working with lawmakers in Congress to develop new and improved solutions.


In 2024, one priority strategy for improving workforce development is expanding opportunities through reform of the Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act. The federal WIOA law provides funding for state and local workforce training programs open to citizens interested in skills training and career services and is targeted toward low-income individuals and veterans. WIOA made significant improvements to the public workforce system when it was approved on a bipartisan basis by Congress in 2014, but nearly a decade later, significant challenges hamper the system’s ability to provide high-quality services to workers and employers.

Some NRCA members have had success in recent years using WIOA programs to help address workforce development needs. However, many of the programs, which vary in operation and structure by state, often contain paperwork requirements and other obstacles that hinder their effectiveness. But some of the programs are not targeted at sectors of the economy most in need of workforce services.

NRCA believes WIOA programs should be more responsive to the needs of roofing industry employers. Given this issue’s importance, NRCA made WIOA reform a priority issue during Roofing Day in D.C., the roofing industry’s annual advocacy event.

NRCA supports WIOA reforms that will streamline the bureaucracy and provide flexibility within the workforce training system to improve accessibility for employers, especially small businesses. Reforms should provide autonomy and transparency at state and local levels to spur innovation and enable the system to respond more effectively to workforce shortages to help close the skills gap.

NRCA also supports allowing more entities to participate as eligible training providers to expand opportunities within the roofing industry. Additionally, provisions to expand industry and sector partnerships and allocate more funding for incumbent worker education have significant potential to help members address workforce needs.

H.R. 6655

NRCA’s advocacy efforts during the past few years are paying off. In December 2023, after months of negotiations among key lawmakers in Congress, bipartisan legislation was released to reauthorize and reform WIOA. This bill, H.R. 6655, A Stronger Workforce for America Act, was introduced by Reps. Virginia Foxx (R-N.C.), chairwoman of the House Committee on Education and the Workforce, and Bobby Scott (D-Va.), ranking member of the committee.

To contact a member of Congress to urge support for H.R. 6655, A Stronger Workforce for America Act, visit

NRCA strongly supports H.R. 6655 because it will increase access to WIOA programs for roofing industry employers. It provides for better functioning state and local workforce boards to enable employer input that will lead to more effectively addressing regional workforce shortages. The bill also will allow for greater recognition of competency-based training and certification programs and provides more funding dedicated to incumbent worker training. These and other reforms and improvements have great potential to help more roofing contractors use state-based WIOA programs to address their future workforce needs.

NRCA is pleased H.R. 6655 was approved by the Committee on Education and the Workforce with an overwhelming bipartisan vote of 44-1. The bill now moves to the floor of the House of Representatives for a vote expected soon. Given the strong bipartisan support for the bill, it has a chance to be enacted into law this year even in a difficult political environment. NRCA commends Foxx, Scott and other committee members for working to develop effective workforce solutions that will expand access to well-paying, rewarding careers for employees in roofing and similar industries.

NRCA will continue working to advance this legislation that will benefit employers and employees, as well as other initiatives designed to provide new and/or improved workforce development strategies for members.

DUANE L. MUSSER is NRCA’s vice president of government relations in Washington, D.C.


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