State Workforce Investment Board

March 27, 2015: 9:30 AM
France Perkins Room, Central Maine Commerce Center

State Workforce Investment Board March 27, 2015

Present; Fred Webber, Robert Carmichael (phone), Joanne Harris, Ryan Bushey, Terry Young, Scott Good (proxy), Kevin Healey (proxy), Senator Amy Volk (phone), Tom Davis, Don Berry, Craig Larrabee (proxy), Tracey Cooley, Mel Clarrage, Richard Freund, Liz Ray, William Burney, Judy Plumber-Beale, Yvonne Mickles (phone), Denise Garland, Renee Kelly, Absent; Susan Hammond, Representative Erin Herbig, Sallie Chandler, John Leavitt, Dan Muth Excused; Barbara Woodlee, Meg Harvey, Gail Senese, Laura Boyett, Ed McKersie (proxy) SWIB Staff; Paul Leparulo, Garret Oswald

Fred Webber opened the meeting with welcomes and introductions. First up on the agenda was the approval of Local Area 1 Plan. It had been conditionally approved and needed some clarification. The revised Plan was review by BES and SWIB staff, and the recommendation is to approve the improved plan as written. Mel Clarrage made a motion to approve, Tracey Cooley seconded, and the vote was unanimous in favor to approve. Next up was a WIOA update. Garret Oswald spoke about the recent trip to Boston and the fact that Maine is positioned well regarding the WIOA transition activity that needs to happen. He mentioned that the biggest issue for Maine and other states is the requirement for core program databases to interface and be able to report on common elements. Next biggest concern is the Eligible Training Provider List and the prohibitive cost to training organizations to collect all of the WIOA required data. Looks like the feds are now considering waivers just as there was under WIA. We are still awaiting the program regulations which should have been out in January. There was some discussion about the differences between Unified Plans vs. Combined Plans. The biggest difference is the number of programs that are formally included and to whom the plan gets submitted for approval. Next up, the Board was asked to review and approve the job description for the SWIB Director Position as required by WIOA. After a brief discussion of the ridiculously long required skills and abilities, Joanne Harris volunteered to review and send thoughts for a revised description for the Board’s review at the next meeting. Then came a discussion about WIOA strategic planning. The Board was asked for their thoughts and ideas related to a workforce development system and how to better align the programs, funding, activities, reporting and other related aspects of the system. - It was noted by Judy Plumber-Beale that there are 900 Mainers released from incarceration every year and they will released either with or without skills to earn a living. - We need less job fairs and more hiring fairs - Tom Davis said we need more business for people to go to work at - Ryan Bushey commented that young people need to start somewhere and that there is a sense of entitlement like never before - Rob Carmichael said that networking is an important aspect of a job search, and that Career Centers are a part of the solution - Jeanie Coltart commented that employers too often look at disability and not ability. She also expressed concerns about the use of credit checks as part of the hiring process being unfair to people with disabilities - Terry Young said that they have a shortage of technical talent in central Maine. He also agreed with Rob Carmichael that networking is what works today. Terry’s company is looking for workers with technical skills like lab techs and microbiology types. They have hired older workers, people with criminal backgrounds, people with disabilities and that they promote from within. - Fred Webber commented that we need to have a greater focus on STEM related occupations - Ryan Bushey said that veterans excel as supervisors - Mel Clarrage said that we can help grow the workforce by making sure people with disabilities get skills training for in demand jobs - Jay Collier said that mid-level technology workers are hard to find in Maine. He also said that many mid-level workers are being promoted which creates back fill opportunities, and that more entry level workers will be needed. Proficiency is the key for the IT industry, and that currently they are stealing employees from each other. - Phil Dionne thought that we need to do more with apprenticeship and pre- apprenticeship - Don Berry Agreed with Phil and said that there is a new approach to apprenticeship that focuses on competency based training - skills not seat time. He noted that pre apprenticeship is a great way to develop work ready skills in youth. - There was also a suggestion to look at best practices (in recruiting and hiring) from other states and Canada.

Last on the agenda was the approval of the 1/16/15 meeting minutes. Ryan Bushey made a motion to approve, Mel Clarrage seconded and the vote was unanimous to approve as written.

Next meeting is scheduled for 5/29/15. Respectfully submitted by Garret Oswald