How to find funds for workforce training

| Print |  Email
Friday, September 01, 2006

As Oregon’s recession bottomed out in 2003, Oregon employers faced significant shortages in skilled labor, despite the lower hiring activity of the previous three years. An increasing number of workers retiring with technical experience exacerbated the shortfall in available knowledge. New technologies put further pressure on the less-skilled labor pool.

A task force determined that Oregon lagged behind the rest of the country in public investment in workforce training and that workforce training and development was not connected to Oregon’s engines of economic growth. No coherent statewide strategy existed to combat the problems.

To facilitate better training, Gov. Ted Kulongoski created the Employer Workforce Training Fund (EWTF) in the fall of 2003. The fund, intended to grow and retain a skilled workforce and living-wage jobs in Oregon, assists companies with the cost of training their workers.

The EWTF is a good resource for training Oregon’s private sector workforce. The funds, available on a regional and state level, provide support to companies with a need to train current workers to retain and expand jobs. Regional-based workforce response teams distributed about $3.9 million to Oregon companies each of the last two years. Another $1.2 million was invested annually in statewide workforce training initiatives.

Regional workforce response teams provide a single point-of-contact and connect state resources to local communities.

Each region uses a slightly different application process to award workforce-training funds, with new dollars available each year beginning on July 1. Claire Berger, Oregon’s workforce policy coordinator, expects regional workforce response teams to disburse about $3.6 in matching grants this fiscal year to companies seeking aid with workforce training.

Your company may qualify for workforce training funds.

The award criteria benefit companies in clusters formed around trade-sectors, occupations or skills with shortages, and training necessary to advance a company’s technological capacity or enhance productivity. And while a company must provide matching funds or an equal in-kind contribution to receive the grant funds, no limit exists, apart from budgetary constraints, to the size of an awarded grant.

The awarded funds cannot be used for the recruitment of non-Oregon-based businesses or workers, as wages for trainees, or for the purchase of equipment.

Go to www.oregon.gov/worksource/wrt/index.shtml for further information and resources related to the grant process, including a sample grant application, a boilerplate contract for funding and lessons learned in the grant process

— Robert H. Hamrick

Workforce response teams by county

Columbia, Clatsop and Tillamook
MTC Works
Julie Gassner — 503.325.9511
This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it
www.colcenter.org/onestop/

Multnomah and Washington
WorkSystems Inc.
Nancy Davis — 503.478.7356
This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it
www.worksystems.org

Marion, Polk and Yamhill

Enterprise for Employment and Education
Agness Balassa — 503.399.2358
This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it
www.e3board.info

Linn, Benton and Lincoln

Steve Bekofsky — 541.758.2605
This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it

Lane

Robin Onaclea — 541.686.7736
This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it
www.laneworkforce.org

Douglas

Helga Conrad
This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it
www.douglasworklinks.net

Coos and Curry

Chris Claflin — 541.267-4651
This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it
www.scbec.org

Jackson and Josephine

Dennis Alexander — 541.776.5100
This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it
www.jobcouncil.org

Baker, Union and Wallowa

Donna Betts — 541. 963.2399
www.neoedd.org

Klamath and Lake

Karen Gail — 541.850.9675
This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it
www.workconnection.org

Morrow and Umatilla

Tara Bishop — 541.278.5675
This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it
www.capeco-works.org

Crook, Deschutes and Jefferson

Robin Cope — This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it

Gilliam, Hood River, Sherman, Wasco and Wheeler

Suzanne Burd — 541.506.6123
This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it

Grant, Harney and Malheur

Chad Freeman — 541.575.0251
This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it
www.trainingemployment.org

Clackamas

Terri Houde — 503.657.6958
This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it
www.depts.clackamas.edu/ workforce/about_us.htm

 

More Articles

Fighting Fire With Fire

May 2015
Friday, April 24, 2015
BY BEN DEJARNETTE | INVESTIGATEWEST

Timber companies and environmental groups take a stab at collaboration to boost logging and restoration in Oregon fires.


Read more...

5 ways successful people kickstart the day

The Latest
Thursday, April 02, 2015
coffeethumbBY JACOB PALMER | DIGITAL NEWS EDITOR

Are mornings the most productive part of the day?  We ask five successful executives how they get off to a good start.


Read more...

Can small be large?

Linda Baker
Wednesday, April 01, 2015
040115-lindablogthumbBY LINDA BAKER

Leaders in Oregon's ag sector gathered this morning in Portland’s Coopers Hall winery/taproom to discuss the role of the region as an export gateway, impediments to exporting products and solutions to containerized shipping challenges.


Read more...

The 100 Best Companies to Work For in Oregon

March 2015
Thursday, February 26, 2015
BY KIM MOORE | OB RESEARCH EDITOR

Employment in Oregon is almost back up to prerecession levels — and employers are having to work harder to entice talented staff to join their ranks. This year’s 100 Best Companies to Work For in Oregon project showcases the kind of quality workplaces that foster happy employees. 


Read more...

City announces plans for Portland summer-league baseball team

News
Tuesday, March 10, 2015
IMG 3888BY JACOB PALMER | OB DIGITAL NEWS EDITOR

Baseball is returning to Portland and city officials are hoping economic opportunity comes with it.


Read more...

On the Road

April 2015
Friday, March 27, 2015
BY LINDA BAKER

My daughter turned 18 last week, and for her birthday I got her a Car2Go membership. Not to label myself a disruptor or anything, but it felt like a groundbreaking moment. The two of us, mother and child, were participating in a new teen rite of passage: Instead of handing over the car keys, I handed over a car-sharing card — with the caveat that she not use the gift as her own personal car service.


Read more...

Announcing the date of the 100 Best Green Workplaces in Oregon event

News
Friday, March 20, 2015
OBM-100-best-Green-logo-2015-250pxwBY OB STAFF

Join us to celebrate and network with Oregon’s best green workplaces!


Read more...
Oregon Business magazinetitle-sponsored-links-02
SPONSORED LINKS