Included in the $3.5 trillion spending package announced by Senate Democrats on Tuesday is funding for the creation of a uniformed “Civilian Climate Corps” tasked with the vague mission of “advancing environmental justice.”
The Civilian Climate Corps’ (CCC) inclusion in the package is a major concession to far-left environmental advocates calling for the creation of the CCC as a year one priority of the Green New Deal while lauding the “government jobs” it would create for climate activists.
The CCC is a make-work program for progressive activists complete with free government housing and transportation to work. Enrollees would be paid to wag their finger and lecture taxpayers on climate change activism. CCC members would be the government-stamped Hall Monitors of the Green New Deal.
The CCC’s inclusion in the Democrats’ spending package comes after Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer vowed last week that he would “work tirelessly to achieve a big and bold Civilian Climate Corps that places justice at the center and urgently addresses our interlocking climate and economic crisis.”
Details on the level of proposed funding for the CCC are not yet available, but President Biden’s own proposal previously called for $10 billion in new spending while progressive House members such as Rep. Alexandria Ocasio Cortez have called for a number as high as $132 billion to hire 1.5 million climate activists.
While details are still forthcoming, the plan is modeled off of the 21st Century Civilian Conservation Corps Act introduced by House Democrats last Congress.
The legislation provides further insight into Senate Democrats’ proposal, the details of which are below:
Taxpayer-funded housing, clothing, and feeding of Climate Corps members.
According to the legislation, taxpayers would be responsible for paying the cost of Climate Corps members’ housing, clothing, feeding, allowance, and medical expenses. Nothing screams good-paying jobs like an “allowance” from the government. Here it is straight from the bill’s text:
“The President may provide housing for persons employed in the Civilian Conservation Corps and furnish them with such subsistence, clothing, medical attendance and hospitalization, and cash allowance, as may be necessary, during the period they are so employed.”
Taxpayer-funded transportation to “work” for Climate Corps members.
Not only will the government provide food, clothing, housing, and an allowance, it will also pick up members of the Climate Corps and drive them to work for them.
“The President may provide for the transportation of persons employed in the Civilian Conservation Corps to and from the places of employment.”
Allows President Biden to seize private property through land condemnation.
President Biden would be empowered to seize public land deemed necessary to construct projects authorized under the bill.
“The President, or the head of any department or agency authorized by the President to construct any project or to carry on any public works under this Act, may acquire real property for such project or public work by purchase, donation, condemnation, or otherwise.”
Jobs are prioritized for individuals who have already used up unemployment benefits
According to the text of the legislation, the President shall prioritize “unemployed citizens who have exhausted their entitlement to unemployment compensation,” over other citizens still “eligible for unemployment compensation payable under any State law or Federal unemployment compensation law.”
80 percent of funding used on employment, not conservation.
While the Biden administration claims the proposal is about conservation and addressing climate change, the legislation mandates that 80 percent of funding is to be used just on the salaries of staff.
“Not less than 80 percent of the funds utilized pursuant to paragraph (1) must be used to provide for the employment of individuals under this Act.”
Based on a failed 1930’s program that housed “employees” in military camps.
The effort is reportedly an attempt by the Biden administration to revive a long-defunct jobs program created in 1933 as part of the New Deal and similarly titled the Civilian Conservation Corps (CCC). In 1937, shortly after the CCC’s creation, Congress elected to phase out funding for the program, officially ending the CCC in 1942.
According to a September report from the Congressional Research Service, The CCC was a government employment program for unemployed males aged 18-25 in which “enrollees were recruited, hired, and trained by the federal government, worked under federal supervision, lived in government-run military camps, and received stipends paid for with federal funding.”
CCC was extremely accident-prone.
It turns out taking untrained youths and asking them to perform manual labor in the wilderness is a dangerous idea. “Given the nature of the work (“most of which consisted of manual labor”) and the inexperience of most enrollees, accidents were inevitable,” according to a National Archives report cataloging the accident reports of the CCC program.
According to the report, over 7,600 workplace accidents were filed during the CCC’s short existence and included several workplace deaths and life-threatening injuries. The report details cases of drownings and construction accidents.