NASHVILLE - Tennessee Department of Labor & Workforce Development Commissioner James Neeley has awarded more than $344,000 in Incumbent Worker grants to 12 West Tennessee companies to avoid downsizing and keep jobs in the area. A total of 1,314 workers will receive training.
"The Incumbent Worker Training Program provides grant funding for customized training for existing for-profit businesses," said Commissioner Neeley. "Through this customer-driven program, Tennessee is able to effectively retain and keep businesses competitive through the upgrading of skills training for existing full-time employees. These 12 West Tennessee companies have met comprehensive criteria to qualify for these grants. I am proud to award this grant money to keep West Tennessee workers on the job."
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 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.
Dyersburg State Community College, The Southwest Tennessee Human Resource Agency, the West Tennessee local workforce board, the Northwest Tennessee workforce board, Workforce Investment Network and the TDLWD worked together as a team to award the grant to the 12 companies. Close to $1 million in Incumbent Worker Training grants were awarded in fiscal year 2004-2005. The following West Tennessee companies received Incumbent Worker Training grants:
See list below for companies in Middle and East Tennessee that have received the Incumbent Worker Training grant. For more information on the Incumbent Worker Training Program contact Jim Alford, director of employer services, Tennessee Department of Labor and Workforce Development at (615) 253-1330.