Stabenow proposes job training program to boost the economy

Stabenow said the bill was necessary because there is a skills gap among the unemployed.

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“At a time when millions of Americans are looking for good-paying jobs, businesses are struggling to find qualified workers for new positions,” Stabenow said. “The New Skills for New Jobs Act will leverage successful job training partnerships between our community colleges and local businesses to help close the skills gap so our workers are able to get good jobs right now.”

Stabenow’s bill is based on a state program in Michigan that allows businesses to enter into a partnership with a community college to provide new employees with job training. Once the newly trained employees begin working, their state income tax payments are used to pay back the community college for the cost of the training. Her bill would provide a federal match equal to the state training reimbursement, paying community colleges every quarter.

Stabenow said the additional wages and salaries created by her bill would have a trickle down effect on the overall economy as people buy more goods and pay income taxes. She said 10,000 Michigan workers were trained because of the program last year, generating nearly $76 million in wages for the state.

Stabenow did not release details on how the bill is paid for.