Comprehensive Employment and Training Act (CETA)
U.S. Congress
CitationPub. L. 93-203 Job Training and Community Services Act
Territorial extentUnited States
Enacted byU.S. Congress
EnactedDecember 28, 1973
Signed byRichard Nixon
SignedDecember 28, 1973
Legislative history
Bill titleS. 1559, the Job Training and Community Services Act
Bill citationPub. L. 93-203 Job Training and Community Services Act
Introduced byJack Kemp (RNY)
Repealed by
Ronald Reagan in March 1984
Related legislation
Job Training Partnership Act of 1982
artist relief, art jobs program, federal artist employment, public art
Status: Repealed

The Comprehensive Employment and Training Act (CETA, Pub. L.Tooltip Public Law (United States) 93–203) was a United States federal law enacted by the Congress, and signed into law by President Richard Nixon on December 28, 1973[1] to train workers and provide them with jobs in the public service.[2] The bill was introduced as S. 1559, the Job Training and Community Services Act,[3] by Republican Representative Jack Kemp of New York.

The program offered work to those with low incomes and the long term unemployed as well as summer jobs to low income high school students. Full-time jobs were provided for a period of 12 to 24 months in public agencies or private not for profit organizations. The intent was to impart a marketable skill that would allow participants to move to an unsubsidized job. It was an extension of the Works Progress Administration (WPA) program from the 1930s.[2]

Inspired by the WPA's employment of artists in the service to the community in the 1930s, the San Francisco Arts Commission initiated the CETA/Neighborhood Arts Program in the 1970s, which employed painters, muralists, musicians, performing artists, poets and gardeners to work in schools, community centers, prisons and wherever their skills and services were of value to the community.[4] The idea for CETA/Neighborhood Arts Program came from John Kreidler, then working with the Arts Commission as an intern, with the Arts Commission's Neighborhood Arts Program under the direction of Stephen Goldstine.[5][6] The program was so successful in San Francisco that it became a model for similar programs, nationally. The CETA Artists Project in New York City was one of the largest.[2]

Nine years later, CETA was replaced by the Job Training Partnership Act.[7][8]


  1. ^ Peters, Gerhard; Woolley, John T., "Statement on Signing the Comprehensive Employment and Training Act of 1973, December 28, 1973", The American Presidency Project, retrieved 2012-08-30
  2. ^ a b c Maksymowicz, Virginia (2020-12-26). "The Forgotten Federally Employed Artists". Hyperallergic. Retrieved 2020-12-27.
  3. ^ "Bill Summary & Status, 93rd Congress (1973-1974), S.1559". THOMAS. Library of Congress.
  4. ^ Reiss, Suzanne B.,interviewer, “The Arts and Community Oral History Project: San Francisco Neighborhood Arts Program,” Bancroft Library, University of California, Berkeley, 1978
  5. ^ Hamlin, Jesse (2008-04-21). "S.F. Neighborhood Arts: 40 years of art for all". SFGATE. Retrieved 2020-12-27.
  6. ^ Chen, Kevin B.; Cortez, Jaime (2017). "Legacy of the Neighborhood Arts Program". FoundSF. Archived from the original on 2019-03-19. Retrieved 2020-12-27.
  7. ^ "WB - Our History (An Overview 1920 - 2012)". Retrieved 2015-10-13.
  8. ^ Bovard, James (2011-09-13). "What Job 'Training' Teaches? Bad Work Habits". Wall Street Journal. ISSN 0099-9660. Retrieved 2020-12-27.