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April 6, 2012
Governor Paul LePage met with the State Workforce Investment Board today to discuss workforce training efforts aimed at providing workers with better opportunities for job skill training and helping businesses access a better qualified workforce.
“Two of my greatest priorities as Governor relate directly to workforce,” Governor LePage said. “We need to ensure students have the skills they need to be productive workers when they graduate, and we must get targeted training to people in the workforce today so that they can be competitive and successful in the job market.”
The Governor noted that in his travels throughout the state he has encountered many employers who have indicated that they have positions to fill but were not able to find qualified applicants for the jobs.
The State Workforce Investment Board is comprised of Maine business leaders, state and local officials, along with representatives from education, organized labor and service providers. The panel is charged with creating and implementing policies that quickly train the most people for meaningful careers giving industries the skilled workforce needed to support Maine’s economic recovery.
“We must make this system more effective in training people with skills employers need.” Governor LePage said to members of the State Workforce Investment Board. “There is something wrong when employers with good jobs can’t find workers. It is holding our economy back.”
Earlier this year, the Governor proposed changes to the workforce system to allow a greater share of Federal workforce funds to go to direct job skill training. The plan involves state Chamber of Commerce organizations throughout the state in gathering feedback from businesses in order to identify skill gaps in the workforce, prioritize training initiatives and develop defined career ladders where workers can build on prior skills and new learning to advance in their jobs.
Frederick L. Webber, chair of the State Workforce Investment Board applauded the Governor’s work on the issue. “Governor LePage has a clear vision for how this system must be positioned to ensure opportunity for all workers and businesses in our economy moving forward,” Webber said. “We are committed to carrying out his plan.”