By Bill Osterndorf, Joanna Colosimo
OFCCP has released its Congressional Budget Justification for the fiscal year (FY) 2023. It can be found in full on the U.S. Department of Labor website.
In the overview section, OFCCP highlighted the following items as priorities for 2023:
- Building a more effective contractor compliance evaluation process for greater strategic
impact to redress systemic employment discrimination and promote equal employment
- Empowering workers by developing strong partnerships with workers’ rights organizations to better identify potential systemic issues in contractor workplaces.
- Promoting proactive action by employers to monitor and address barriers to equal
opportunity, changing employer and industry practices that can prevent discrimination
and promote access to good jobs for all workers.
OFCCP also notes that this budget would allow the agency to support its additional enforcement responsibilities for the growing number of contractors receiving funding from the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law. OFCCP also intends to strengthen its investigation and resolution of systemic discrimination cases and engage in effective cross-regional nationwide collaboration.
The budget justification for FY 2023 requests an increase of $41 million, which would be close to a 40% increase over OFCCP’s budget for the current fiscal year. The budget justification would also show an increase in personnel from 420 during FY 2022 to 628 during FY 2023. Importantly, OFCCP notes they will increase their capacity to strengthen investigations by hiring highly-skilled and specialized employees including statisticians, labor economists, and industrial psychologists.
OFCCP explicitly discusses its interest in evaluating employment practices at multiple sites for larger contractors in its budget justification. The agency also discusses its intent to enhance compliance evaluation for construction contractors, especially at sites designated at “Mega Construction Projects.” The budget justification discusses the agency’s interest in promoting workplace equity, noting that “[a]dvancing pay equity will continue to be an OFCCP enforcement and compliance assistance priority.”
Finally, OFCCP discusses the impact of the pandemic and remote work. OFCCP aims to align its traditional review of single establishments by reflecting the world as it works now. The agency mentions taking enterprise-wide approaches to evaluate employment practices such as hiring and compensation.
DCI will continue to review the budget justification and other recent releases from OFCCP, including Directive 2022-02, and provide further insights on changes to OFCCP’s priorities and procedures.