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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

CONTACT: MILISSA REIERSON
MAY 8, 2007
(615) 741-2257
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GOVERNOR BREDESEN ANNOUNCES CLOSE TO $2 MILLION FEDERAL AWARD FOR TENNESSEE DEPARTMENT OF LABOR

AWARD THIRD HIGHEST IN NATION FOR TOP PERFORMANCE

NASHVILLE – Governor Phil Bredesen and Tennessee Labor and Workforce Development Commissioner James Neeley announce the department has qualified to receive close to $2 million in an incentive award from the U.S. Department of Labor for exceeding all performance goals that were set for the state of Tennessee’s innovative workforce development and education activities. Tennessee is one of only 10 states in the nation to qualify for the incentive grant awards, and the amount of Tennessee’s award is the third highest amount in the qualifying states.

The incentive award will be shared with the divisions of Employment and Workforce Development and Adult Education within the Department of Labor & Workforce Development, and the Department of Education’s division of Career and Technical Education.

“I am extremely proud of the work of those at the state and local levels who contributed to the outstanding performance that led to the achievement of this award,” said Governor Bredesen. “This award money from the United States Department of Labor will benefit all hardworking Tennesseans who are seeking to better their lives and contribute to our state’s economic development.”

“This award marks the fifth consecutive year in which Tennessee’s workforce development system and education system have received national performance awards,” said Commissioner Neeley. “Staff at both the state and local levels had to meet high standards of achievement to get this award, and to be recognized as one of only nine states in the nation is phenomenal!”

“We have worked closely with the Department of Labor and Workforce Development to develop a comprehensive system of job readiness and skill trainings across Tennessee, ” said Education Commissioner Lana Seivers. “It is the dedicated professionals working everyday to provide our students and adults with the resources they need to succeed that most deserve this national recognition.”

To qualify, a state must have exceeded all negotiated performance levels for Workforce Investment Act (WIA Title I), Adult Education (Title II), and Vocational Education (Perkins Act) programs. The several statewide achievements include: 87% of adults who came in without a job were employed within the first three months after completion of the program; 91% of dislocated workers were placed in jobs and still had the jobs nine months later; 90% of youth participants achieved at least one work readiness skill, and 24,781 WIA participants were served in the state during the one-year period ending in June, 2006.



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