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metal engraving machineManufacturers would receive preference when the state distributes certain workforce training grants under legislation that has received final legislative approval and been sent to Gov. Phil Murphy to be signed into law.

The Assembly unanimously passed A-4023 (DeAngelo, D-14; Houghtaling, D-11) on Monday.

The bill would add manufacturers to a list of categories of employers who are given priority for access to workforce development funds.

“As we saw at the Manufacturing Caucus hearing in South Jersey earlier this fall, finding skilled workers is a huge challenge for manufacturers in this job market,” said NJBIA Vice President for Government Affairs Mike Wallace. “If we want to make New Jersey a place where manufacturers can succeed, we must provide a way for them to find the skilled workers they need.

“This bill would grant manufacturers a preference for the state’s limited amount of job training grants so they can train people for jobs that are available right now and going unfilled,” Wallace said.

The Office of Customized Training in the Workforce Development Partnership Program provides grants to employers for training in in-demand jobs; employer, labor, and faith-based groups; partnership with higher education institutions; and military contractors in addition to those training military veterans and STEM workers.

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