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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

CONTACT: MILISSA REIERSON
JULY 31, 2006
(615) 741-2257
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GOVERNOR AWARDS DYER CO. COMPANY JOB TRAINING GRANT
SARA LEE FOODS AWARDED $49,196

NASHVILLE – Governor Phil Bredesen and Tennessee Department of Labor & Workforce Development Commissioner James Neeley have awarded $49,196 to Sara Lee Foods. in Newburn, Tennessee. The Incumbent Worker Training Grants help Tennessee companies avoid downsizing and keep jobs in the state. Close to $2 million in Incumbent Worker Training Grants was awarded in 2005 benefiting almost 10,000 Tennessee workers.

“The Incumbent Worker Training Grants are essential to help Tennessee’s workers look to the future with job growth and stability,” said Governor Bredesen. “This grant will help keep this company competitive and increase the skills of their talented employees.”

"The Incumbent Worker Training Program provides grant funding for customized training for existing businesses," said Commissioner Neeley. "I am proud to award this grant money to keep area workers on the job."

“I commend Governor Bredesen and Commissioner Neeley for awarding the Incumbent Worker grant to Sara Lee Foods.,” said Representative Phillip Pinion. “This will help keep Dyer County workers employed and help improve our economy.

“The Incumbent Worker grants are a wonderful tool for companies to train their workers in the latest technology and production skills,” said Representative Craig Fitzhugh.

Dyersburg State Community College played a key role in awarding the grant to Sara Lee Foods.

The Tennessee Department of Labor and Workforce Development administers the Incumbent Worker Training program. The program has been structured to be flexible to meet the business's training objectives. The business may use public, private, or its own in-house training provider based on the nature of the training.

The following criteria must be met to qualify for the Incumbent Worker Training Program. Employers must be in operation in Tennessee for at least one year prior to application date. Employers must have at least five full-time employees, demonstrate financial viability and be current on all state tax obligations. Funding priority is given to businesses whose grant proposals represent a significant layoff avoidance strategy and represent a significant upgrade of skills.



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