Chance to Compete Act of 2023

Floor Speech

Date: Jan. 24, 2023
Location: Washington, DC


Mr. CONNOLLY. Mr. Speaker, the civil service is the lifeblood of our government and provides taxpayers, small businesses, and vulnerable populations vital resources and services throughout the country.

As Chairman of the Subcommittee on Government Operations for the past 4 years, I held a series of hearings focused on revitalizing and rejuvenating the federal workforce.

What we found is that proposals like Chance to Compete should exist in a constellation of improvements to federal workforce recruitment that includes better pay, reforming federal internships to improve the intern to employee pipeline, and remaining competitive with the private sector in areas such as hybrid work--all of which are the subjects of legislation produced by the Government Operations Subcommittee last Congress (FAIR Act, Next Gen Feds Act, and Telework and Metrics Cost Savings Act).

I am proud to be the lead-cosponsor of the Chance to Compete Act, which leverages skill assessments to build a more competitive, equitable, and inclusive workforce.

This bill has bipartisan support and through demonstration projects at agencies proven empirical success.

In short, this legislation allows an agency that has an open position to develop a skills-based assessment to evaluate candidates in a way that goes above and beyond the traditional review of past work and education experience.

Furthermore, this bill:

Enables agencies to share their assessment findings with other agencies, streamlining the overall hiring process and ensuring competitive candidates do not fall between the cracks if they have already proven their ability to perform.

And deploys talent teams at agencies to ensure the development and implementation of the goals of this bill.

I thank Representative Virginia Foxx, for her hard work and leadership on this bill as well as the American Federation of Government Employees (AFGE), Partnership for Public Service (PPS), the Senior Executives Association (SEA), Professional Managers Association (PMA), and others who have endorsed this legislation.