The Corporation for National and Community Service (CNCS) is the result of a merger between two previously existing agencies, ACTION and the Commission on National and Community Service. For two decades, ACTION administered AmeriCorps VISTA and Senior Corps programs—Foster Grandparents, RSVP, and Senior Companions. ACTION was authorized by the Domestic Volunteer Service Act of 1973 as amended.
1990: National and Community Service Act of 1990 -- A renewed focus on volunteerism in America led to the passage of the National and Community Service Act of 1990. This legislation, signed into law by President George H.W. Bush, created a new independent federal agency named the Commission on National and Community Service.
The Commission on National and Community Service was charged with supporting four streams of service:
- Service-learning programs for school-aged youth
- Higher education service programs
- Youth corps
- National service demonstration models
1992: National Civilian Community Corps (NCCC) -- A bipartisan group of senators, working with the Bush administration, drafted legislation to create NCCC as a demonstration program to explore the possibility of using post-Cold War military resources to help solve national challenges. The NCCC, enacted as part of the 1993 Defense Authorization Act, was decided to be a residential service program modeled on the Depression-era Civilian Conservation Corps and the United States military.
1993: The National and Community Service Trust Act of 1993 -- Both the NCCC and the Commission on National and Community Service were incorporated into the Clinton administration’s National and Community Service Trust Act of 1993. A bipartisan coalition of Congress members introduced the bill, which President Bill Clinton signed it into law on Sept. 21, 1993. The legislation created the Corporation for National and Community Service, and three CNCS administered programs (Senior Corps, AmeriCorps, and Learn and Serve America) with the responsibility of mobilizing Americans into service.
2002: USA Freedom Corps -- In his 2002 State of the Union address, President George W. Bush announced the creation of the USA Freedom Corps. Chaired by the President, the USA Freedom Corps was a coordinating council that worked to strengthen the American culture of service and helped connect citizens to volunteer opportunities.
2009: Serve America Act -- On April 21, 2009, President Barack Obama signed the Edward M. Kennedy Serve America Act at an elementary school in Washington, DC. The Serve America Act reauthorized and expanded national service programs administered by the Corporation for National and Community Service.
- President Obama Signs Landmark National Service Legislation (4/21/2009)
- Transcript: Press Briefing on the Edward M. Kennedy Serve America Act (4/20/2009)
- Statement: Update on Edward M. Kennedy Serve America Act (4/17/2009)
- Press Release: House Sends Landmark National Service Bill to President (3/31/2009)
- Statement by President Obama on the Edward M. Kennedy Serve America Act (The White House - 3/31/2009)
- Detailed Summary of the Edward M. Kennedy Serve America Act (H.R. 1388, as of 3-31-2009 - 70 KB PDF)
- Highlights of the Edward M. Kennedy Serve America Act (H.R. 1388, Senate-passed as of 3/26/2009)
- Bill Language of the Edward M. Kennedy Serve America Act (PDF) (H.R. 1388, Senate-passed as of 3/26/2009)
- Statement of Administration Policy on H.R. 1388, Generations Invigorating Volunteerism and Education (GIVE) Act (3/24/2009)
- Statement of Administration Policy on H.R. 1388, Generations Invigorating Volunteerism and Education (GIVE) Act (3/17/2009)
- Letter from the Office of Management and Budget on National Service Legislation (169 KB PDF - 3/6/2009)
- 2012-2013 AmeriCorps General Provisions
- 2012-2013 Clarifying Guidance for AmeriCorps Provisions
- 2012-2013 Admin/PDAT/Disability Provisions