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Secretary of Labor Thomas E. Perez
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Department of Labor Budget Overview FY 2003

Total Budget
(Dollars in Billions)
  FY 2002 FY 2003 Change
Discretionary Programs: $12.5 $11.4 -$1.1
Mandatory Programs: $46.9 $45.1 -$1.8
Total, Department of Labor $59.4 $56.5 -$2.9
Full Time Equivalents 17,432 17,179 -253


At the Department of Labor, the Fiscal Year (FY) 2003 budget was developed with the goal of serving the needs of the 21st Century Workforce.

The Department's FY 2003 budget reflects the amounts necessary to address the challenges related to a changing economy and workforce -- currently in a slump -- while balancing the achievement of three overarching national goals: winning the war against terrorism; strengthening protections of our homeland; and revitalizing our economy and creating jobs.

Pie Chart Showing Allocation of DOL FY 2003 Budget. Click for Text Version.

For FY 2003, the Department will play a key role in ensuring that President Bush's economic agenda is accomplished. The President's economic agenda can be summed up in one word: jobs. From ensuring a workforce that is prepared for 21st Century challenges - to providing a secure retirement to the Nation's laborers, the Department of Labor will be there in FY 2003.

The total request for the Department in FY 2003 is $56.5 billion in budget authority and 17,179 full-time equivalents. The request for the Department's discretionary programs is $11.4 billion.

Back to Work Relief Package

"We've got a job to do, all of us." In an October 4, 2001, speech at the Department of Labor, President George W. Bush underscored the importance of his Back to Work Relief Package, which includes immediate relief to those hardest hit and focuses on mitigating the financial impacts of the terrorist attacks on our workforce. It would provide new National Emergency Grants and extend unemployment benefits in those states that were direct targets of the terrorist attacks. It also encourages affected workers to take advantage of more than $6 billion in existing Federal programs that provide job search, training, placement, and other services. The President continues to support these proposals as part of a bipartisan economic security plan.

The Department heeded the President's call - and that focus continues in FY 2003.

Protecting Dislocated Workers

Image Showing President's Economic Security Proposals. Click for Text Version.Just last month, DOL took further steps to assist workers in a still-sluggish economy. The Office of the 21st Century Workforce held a day-long jobs and skills fair to help put the Washington, D.C., region back to work. Everything was in one place -- companies looking for employees, information on job opportunities, and access to employers in nearly all fields. This included information on training, certification, skills, education -- and one-stop access to the full range of government services for workers in transition.

Related FY 2003 initiatives include continuing the implementation of National Emergency Grants as part of a bipartisan economic security plan in 2002 and reforming the Federal/State Unemployment Insurance program.

Unemployment Insurance and Employment Service Reform

Image Showing DOL Unemployment Insurance Reform Measures. Click for Text Version.The Department's Unemployment Insurance (UI) and Employment Service (ES) systems provide critical services to unemployed workers. UI helps workers bridge the gap between jobs while stabilizing the economy during downturns. The ES helps unemployed workers find jobs and employers find new workers. The Department's 2003 budget proposes short- and long-term strategies to promote flexibility and strengthen unemployment insurance and employment services to America's workers and businesses. Short-term proposals -- which are included in the President's Economic Security Package -- include a 13-week extension of unemployment benefits in all states and distribution of $9 billion in Federal funds to State unemployment trust funds. Long-term proposals would make extended benefits more readily available in future economic downturns, reduce Federal unemployment taxes, and give States control of their own administrative funding.

Retirement Security

Image Showing DOL Retirement Security Measures. Click for Text Version.President Bush and Secretary Chao share the priority of ensuring retirement security for our Nation's workers and retirees. To achieve that goal, the Department's Pension and Welfare Benefits Administration protects the integrity of pensions, health plans, and other employee benefits for more than 150 million people. From ensuring that workers receive the information they need to protect their benefit rights to ensuring that plan officials understand their legal responsibilities to their employers, DOL is making a difference -- and, in doing so, is helping millions of America's workers rest a little more soundly at night. For FY 2003, the President's request for PWBA is $121 million - a $6 million increase over FY 2002. PWBA is also proposing legislative changes that would reinforce the American workers' confidence in the security of the private retirement system. Additional Departmental funds are proposed in the President's FY 2003 budget to protect pension funds from labor racketeering.

Job Corps

Image Showing DOL Job Corps Measures. Click for Text Version.The President is requesting $1.5 billion for Job Corps in FY 2003 -- an increase of $73 million above FY 2002. Job Corps is a nationwide network of more than 120 residential facilities that provide comprehensive and intensive training, career development, job placement and support services to at-risk young adults. The Job Corps mission is to attract and enroll eligible young people; teach them the academic, vocational and social skills that they need to become employable and independent; and help them enter satisfying and long-lasting careers.

According to a thorough and objective economic impact study published last year, the dollar value of benefits that Job Corps generates for society is more than twice what the taxpayers invest. At the President's FY 2003 request, Job Corps will enroll about 75,000 new students. In addition, the President's 2003 budget request contains measures to increase teacher pay, support center expansion, and further improve the quality of Job Corps services to disadvantaged young people - including ensuring program accreditation to award high school diplomas.

Office of Disability Employment Policy

Image Showing DOL Measures for Helping Workers with Disabilities. Click for Text Version.The President's FY 2003 request for the Office of Disability Employment Policy (ODEP) is $47 million - an increase of $9 million over FY 2002. This increase will support ODEP's mission to bring a heightened and permanent long-term focus to the goal of increasing employment of persons with disabilities through policy analysis, technical assistance, and development of best practices, along with outreach, education, constituent services, and promoting ODEP's mission among employers.

Office of the Inspector General

The President's request in FY 2003 for the Office of Inspector General (OIG) is $65 million -- an increase of $5 million over FY 2002. This increase will allow the OIG to further its mission of improving the effectiveness, efficiency, and economy of Departmental programs and operations through audits, investigations, and evaluations. The OIG also serves to detect and prevent fraud and abuse in DOL programs and labor racketeering in the American workplace.

Office of Labor Management Standards

Image Showing OLMS Staffing and Budget, relating to Protecting the Rights of Union Members. Click for Text Version.The Office of Labor Management Standards (OLMS) in the Department's Employment Standards Administration is the sole Federal agency charged with administering and enforcing most provisions of the Labor-Management Reporting and Disclosure Act of 1959, as amended. This is the law enacted by Congress to ensure basic standards of democracy and fiscal responsibility in labor organizations representing employees in private industry.

For FY 2003, the President is requesting an increase of $3.9 million and 40 FTE for OLMS to carry-out this important mission.

Veterans' Employment and Training Service

Image Showing those Veterans' Programs Staying at DOL and those Transferred to Veterans Affairs. Click for Text Version.The President's FY 2003 budget adopts the recommendation of the Principi Commission to move several Veterans' Employment and Training Service (VETS) programs from the Department of Labor to the Department of Veterans Affairs.

The Department will retain responsibility for Workforce Investment Act grants that benefit veterans, and will continue to enforce veterans' employment rights and veterans' preference. Transferred to the Department of Veterans Affairs will be the Disabled Veterans' Outreach Program; the Local Veterans' Employment Representatives program; and the Homeless Veterans' Program. Related information is contained in the VETS section of this Overview.

Bureau of International Labor Affairs

The FY 2003 budget requests $55 million for the Bureau of International Labor Affairs, which would allow the agency to continue its core mission of providing grants to international organizations to reduce exploitative child labor, and finance bilateral technical assistance to support international trade agreements.

Office of the 21st Century Workforce

Image Showing DOL 21st Century Workforce Measures. Click for Text Version.Last year, Secretary Chao announced the creation of the Office of the 21st Century Workforce with a mission to ensure that all American workers have as fulfilling and financially rewarding a career as they aspire to have and to ensure that no worker is left behind in the limitless potential of the dynamic, global economy of this new millennium. Much has been done to further this effort.

On June 20, 2001, Secretary Chao hosted the Summit on the 21st Century Workforce. The Summit was a rousing success as President George W. Bush and leaders from business, labor, academia, and government joined the Secretary to address the structural changes affecting our workforce and our economy.

The Summit's focus became even more critical in the wake of the events of September 11.

Implementing the President's Management Agenda

Image Showing the President's Management Agenda. Click for Text Version.The Department has instituted a systematic approach to addressing and implementing the President's management reform agenda. The five government-wide agenda reforms - Budget and Performance Integration; Strategic Management of Human Capital; Competitive Sourcing; Improve Financial Performance; and Expanding Electronic Government are teamed with a sixth reform with which the Department has been charged: Faith-based Initiatives. Secretary Chao created a new Departmental entity to better manage the Department's progress against these reforms as well as other management initiatives that cross-cut Departmental agencies.

Management Review Board

In August 2001, Secretary Chao established the Department's Management Review Board (MRB) to support the Administration's priorities and to coordinate action on management issues that should have common solutions. Through the MRB, the Department has in place a management process that complements the President's Management Council, thus facilitating consistency in Departmental decision-making.


As demonstrated in this Overview and in the agency summaries to follow, for FY 2003, the Department has a number of initiatives planned to better address the needs of the 21st Century workforce. That is both our goal and mission.

And as President Bush stated in his visit to the Department of Labor, "we've got a job to do." DOL is doing it well.

Photo montage of people in the workplace and the DOL seal.