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ABC is conducting an important survey of contractor members and chapter staff to gauge opinions on the U.S Department of Labor’s controversial proposed rule, which significantly overhauls regulations for government-registered apprenticeship programs. Ensuring as many members and chapters as possible respond to this survey will be vital so ABC can provide effective, informed comments that seek regulatory clarity and push back against concerning aspects of the DOL’s proposed rule. ABC has extended the survey deadline to Feb. 22 at 11:59 p.m. ET.


On Jan. 17, 2024, the Federal Register published a controversial 626-page proposed rule that would make significant revisions to the National Apprenticeship System that will affect ABC members, chapters, apprentices and other industry stakeholders participating in government-registered apprenticeship programs.

The proposal would make significant changes to how employer and chapter GRAPs are approved and run, adding more recordkeeping and paperwork requirements while also eliminating flexible competency-based approaches to workforce development in certain circumstances. ABC is concerned that the rule would undermine ABC’s and the construction industry’s investments in GRAPs, which are a key component of ABC’s all-of-the above approach addressing the construction industry’s skilled labor shortage of 501,000 in 2024 alone. ABC is a major participant in the GRAP system, with over 450 government-registered apprenticeship programs operated by chapters across the country.

On Jan. 30, ABC conducted a webinar to provide insight into the proposed rule’s impact on GRAPs. A recording of the webinar is now available on the ABC Academy website. Additionally, on Feb. 16, ABC members and National staff participated in a Small Business Administration roundtable and heard from DOL representatives regarding the rule. Members are encouraged to contact the SBA directly to provide feedback on the proposals impacts to small sponsors and employers. 

For more information on the proposed rule, Apprenticeship for America has provided an overview of the rule and a section-by-section analysis of changes from the existing rule. The proposed rule’s table of contents also provides links to specific aspects of the proposal.

ABC distributed the survey on Feb. 7. Please email [email protected] to receive the survey link or if you have any questions.