Today, the Texas Public Policy Foundation celebrates the passage of House Bill 1859 and 1391, two pieces of legislation that will ensure that Texans will have alternative paths to licensure for skilled labor positions in demand across the state.

“House Bills 1391 and 1859 will be instrumental in ensuring that Texas has the workforce it needs to support a booming economy, while bridging the gap that exists in the supply of electricians and HVAC technicians,” said Jorge Borrego, postsecondary education analyst for TPPF’s Next Generation Texas initiative. “By providing an alternative path to licensure through the completion of a career education program, rather than the current 2,000-4,000 hours of on-the-job training at a reduced or nonexistent wage, the Texas workforce will continue to be competitive and meet the needs of its growing population.”

“Turning a wrench can turn a life around, and House Bills 1391 and 1859 ensure that more Texans can pursue skilled labor jobs without the barriers to entry that stopped them before,” said Rep. Matt Schaefer (R-Tyler). “By expanding the pathway to licensure, via a hybrid model of classroom and practical experience available starting in high school, we can give young men purpose, confidence, and the ability to succeed in the Texas workforce.”