Bureaucratic obstacles and other dysfunction at the District’s workforce agencies have blocked the spending of tens of millions of dollars in recent years to provide job training that could have helped thousands of the unemployed find work, according to officials and city contractors.

The failure to spend city and federal funds available for jobs programs occurred as city leaders lamented that high unemployment in poor neighborhoods was fueling crime.

Top District officials blame most of this year’s underspending on a shortage of nonprofit training providers qualified to do the work — while adding that many of the contractors stopped doing such work in the past because the city failed to pay them on time.

The troubles are so severe that the District is the only jurisdiction in the nation that the U.S. Labor Department currently labels as a “high-risk” partner in job training and employment programs…. [Read full article.]

Robert McCartney, The Washington Post