Stimulus funds to help Grand County job seekers | SkyHiNews.com

Stimulus funds to help Grand County job seekers

Tonya Bina
Sky-Hi Daily News
Grand County, Colorado
Byron Hetzler/Sky-Hi Daily News
ALL | Sky-Hi Daily News

With Grand County’s unemployment rate the highest of all its surrounding counties, the Grand County Public Health office is working with Grand County Colorado Workforce to apply $20,000 in potential stimulus funds to providing job training for low-income residents.

In its proposal for the use of the federal funds, the public health office outlined a varied list of education and job-readiness training that could be made available to individuals at no cost, such as CDL licensing, early childhood education courses, computer training, emergency medical technician training, and other vocation-related courses available through the Colorado Mountain College.

Health and Workforce officials estimate six to 10 eligible individuals of Grand County families could move above poverty level due to new job skills and employment through the future stimulus-funded program.

The program is planned to focus on individuals of families at 200 percent of the federal poverty level who have been laid off or otherwise affected due to company downsizing. Providing the opportunity to change careers or improve skills “may produce more recession-proof jobs, or decrease the likelihood of lay-offs due to improved skills,” according to Public Health’s proposal.

The Colorado Department of Labor reported that Grand County’s employment rate worsened since early 2008 to early 2009, from as 3.2 percent to currently around 7.7 percent. It’s estimated 700 Grand County residents remain out of work.

Colorado’s rate of unemployment for April was at 7.3 percent.

– Tonya Bina can be reached at 970-887-3334 ext. 19603 or e-mail tbina@skyhidailynews.com.


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