Washington, D.C. – Today, Congresswoman Julia Brownley (D-Westlake Village) reintroduced the Help Hire Our Heroes Act, a bill that would restart the Veterans Retraining Assistance Program (VRAP).
“In Ventura County and across the country, too many veterans are unemployed, and it is our duty to help them get the training they need to transition into high-skilled jobs and careers. The Veterans Retraining Assistance Program succeeded in helping many veterans retrain and find employment, and it should not have been allowed to lapse,” said Congresswoman Brownley.
VRAP started in 2012 to provide training assistance to unemployed veterans between the ages of 35 and 60 who are no longer eligible for the GI Bill. It provided up to 12 months of training benefits at community colleges and technical schools in occupations that the Department of Labor has identified as “high demand.”
During the 113th Congress, Brownley introduced legislation to keep the program going, but Speaker Boehner did not allow the bill to move forward. As a result of Congressional inaction, the VA was forced to end the program. VA stopped accepting new applications after October 1, 2013, and stopped paying benefits to enrolled veterans after March 31, 2014.
The bill text can be found here: LINK