Maine’s Workforce Training System is Among the Top Programs in the Country

July 8, 2014

For Immediate Release: Tuesday, July 8, 2014
Contact: Adrienne Bennett, Press Secretary, (207) 287-2531

AUGUSTA – Governor Paul R. LePage released a statement today about the Workforce Investment Act Incentive Grant that Maine has earned by hitting Program Year 2012 performance goals. It’s the first time in 12 years that Maine qualified for an incentive grant.

“When my administration looked into the workforce training system, we saw that the amount of money spent on training for occupational skills was far too low. So we worked to create a more efficient program that prioritized training for jobs that are actually in demand,” said Governor LePage. “Working with the State Workforce Investment Board, as well as our Departments of Labor and Education, we have been able to improve the program and train more people for good-paying careers."

The Maine Departments of Education and Labor have earned the grant of $819,433. Only eight states qualified for an incentive grant: Georgia, Idaho, Indiana, Maine, Oklahoma, Pennsylvania, South Carolina and Texas.

“I am pleased to see Maine among the top eight programs in the country,” said Governor LePage. “All of the qualifying states are led by Republican governors, which I believe illustrates our commitment to the reform and improvement of programs that put people to work. I commend the staff of the Departments of Labor and Education and our partners in the field who have made this possible.”

The Departments of Labor and Education will use the grant to fund industry partnerships and adult literacy. The grant will be awarded statewide to sub-grantee applicants through a competitive grant program designed to improve alignment between the workforce development and education systems.

The goals of the sub-grants will be to improve training outcomes by providing trainees with industry-recognized credentials, to increase adult literacy and to generate higher wages for trainees.

“When we all work together to make sure that taxpayer dollars are spent wisely and invested properly in our citizens, good things happen for our workers, our businesses and our economy,” said the Governor. “Our reforms are paying off.”