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Secretary of Labor Thomas E. Perez

News Release

Labor Department awards $2 million to help dislocated Kentucky coal workers as part of Obama administration's POWER initiative

Grant part of nearly $15 million being awarded today

WASHINGTON — The U.S. Department of Labor today announced a $2 million National Dislocated Worker Grant to Kentucky's Education and Workforce Development Cabinet for reemployment and training services to workers displaced by coal industry layoffs. The grant is part of the Partnership for Opportunity and Workforce and Economic Revitalization initiative announced in March by President Obama.

A coordinated effort among nine federal agencies, POWER makes integrated investments in communities and workers hurt by changes in the coal industry and power sector. The Kentucky grant is part of an investment of nearly $15 million in 36 projects announced today by the U.S. Department of Labor, the U.S. Department of Commerce's Economic Development Administration, the U.S. Small Business Administration, and the Appalachian Regional Commission.

"In the past couple of years the U.S. Department of Labor has invested nearly $30 million in Kentucky's coal communities to ensure that workforce and economic development go hand-in-hand," said U.S. Secretary Labor Thomas E. Perez. "These investments help develop cohesive relationships at the federal, state and local levels that create real opportunities for families throughout the region."

The department's Deputy Assistant Secretary for Employment and Training Byron Zuidema and U.S. Assistant Secretary of Commerce for Economic Development Jay Williams joined Gov. Steve Beshear, Rep. Hal Rogers, and ARC Federal Co-Chair Earl Gohl to announce the grant today at The Center for Rural Development in Somerset, Kentucky.

In addition to today's U.S. Department of Labor grant, Kentucky is also receiving $1 million from the U.S. Department of Commerce's Economic Development Administration and $75,000 from ARC. Together, these funds will provide training, work-based learning, and supportive services to dislocated coal miners and other workers impacted by mass layoffs in the coal industry. Training will be focused on high-demand, high wage positions in broadband service, fiber installation and information technology sectors.

The department previously announced the availability of up to $20 million in Dislocated Worker Grants as part of the POWER initiative. Grants will be awarded on a rolling basis through June 30, 2017.

ETA News Release: [10/15/2015]
Contact Name: Joe Versen
Phone Number: (202) 693-4696
Email:
Versen.Joseph.H@dol.gov
Release Number: 15-2033-ATL