By Vestina F. Crayton, Pinellas County Extension Specialist, Urban Sustainability.
On January 6th the Department of Labor (DOL) announced the availability of approximately $100 million dollars in grant funds for ‘green’ training. $28 million is earmarked for the communities that were impacted by the auto industry reorganization. These funds are part of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA). The DOL has made ‘green’ jobs a primary focus. To show their commitment, in November 2009, the DOL awarded $55 million dollars in grant funds to various organizations for workforce training.
U.S. Secretary of Labor Hilda L. Solis “believes that strong partnerships are the key to the country’s success in strengthening not just training programs but also employers and industries. That’s why the training initiatives at the Department of Labor frequently involve strong partnerships with community colleges, local businesses, and workforce development boards.” Source: Department of Labor
These DOL grant funds will assist unemployed individuals with acquiring the critical skills needed to take advantage of emerging green industries. Areas of opportunities can be found in energy efficiency and the development of clean and renewable energy sources. Some of the careers of interest include but are not limited to solar panel installers, weatherization specialists, energy and wind workers and hybrid/electric auto specialists.
What does this mean for Florida? Join Vestina F. Crayton, Urban Sustainability Extension Specialist for Pinellas County Extension’s Solutions in 30 Webinar Green Jobs on Wednesday, January 20, 2010, 12:15pm- 12:45pm to learn more.
Department of Labor ‘Good Jobs, Safe Jobs, Green Jobs’ online article 2010 January 6