JEFFERSON CITY -- The Missouri Department of Economic Development and its Division of Workforce Development have approved over $1.8 million in state assistance to help companies offset costs associated with training and upgrading the skills of thousands of Missouri workers.
Several companies from Southeast Missouri will be among those awarded assistance.
"The Customized Training Program is a pro-jobs approach to improving the education and skill levels of our workforce in Missouri," said Gov. Matt Blunt in announcing the funding. "Missouri already has a strong, well-educated workforce and this investment in the future will help enhance productivity and allow us to be more competitive in the global economy."
Funds through the Customized Training Program will be used to facilitate classroom training for 185 new and 7,261 existing employees at 49 Missouri companies and 5 training consortiums. The funds are the first round of training grants to be released in the state's new fiscal year that begins July 1. Companies will use the funds to pay for training programs customized to their potential industry and local needs.
Cott Beverages North America and Tetra Pak Materials LP of Sikeston were among funding recipients. Cott was awarded $23,000 to assist 58 workers in training and Tetra Pak will have 134 employees benefit from $35,000 in funding.
There was $50,000 awarded to Noranda Aluminum to assist 304 employees.
Schaefer Electrical Enclosures of Advance will receive $7,500 for 40 trainees; ArvinMeritor Inc. of Dexter will use $40,000 in funding for 800 employees.
In Poplar Bluff, funding went to Bootheel Regional Training Group, $50,000 for 250 workers; $30,000 to Briggs & Stratton Corporation for 200 employees and $29,000 to the Poplar Bluff Training Group for 120 workers.
Training funds were appropriated by the general assembly to the Missouri Job Development Fund and are administered through the state's Customized Training Program. The Missouri Job Development Fund provides assistance to new or expanding businesses in their efforts to train employees in newly created jobs and to retrain or upgrade skills of existing employees. The purpose of the program is to increase and improve the quality of the state's workforce through training initiatives.