NASHVILLE -- Gov. Bill Haslam and Tennessee Department of Labor & Workforce Development Commissioner Karla Davis have aannounced $15,000 grants to John Deere Power Products of Greeneville and to Minco, Inc. of Midway.
"If Tennessee is going to become the number one location in the Southeast for high-quality jobs, then we must offer a well-trained workforce to employers," Haslam said in a news release. "This kind of training grant not only helps educate workers, but also provides incentive to employers looking to relocate or expand in Tennessee."
"Both job creation and retention are vital in maintaining a healthy economy in Tennessee, and the Incumbent Worker Training program has played a key role in accomplishing this," Davis said. "Since the program's inception, Incumbent Worker Training grants have assisted more than 600 businesses by providing $14 million to train approximately 50,000 employees."
In their application for the grant, John Deere Power Products stated this grant would give their workforce the needed skills it takes to be able to problem-solve and consistently deliver production standards that are essential to provide a quality product.
The company has adopted a new core competency with machines that requires employees to be skilled in PLC troubleshooting and to have a better knowledge of the machine process.
Minco stated in its application for the grant that it would train 32 workers in Supervising for Process Improvement, Advanced Process Improvement, Programmable Logic Controls, Welding for Maintenance with Certification and STAR Leadership training.
"I would like to thank Gov. Haslam and Commissioner Davis for their involvement in awarding this grant to the workers of Greene County," said Sen. Steve Southerland, R-1st, of Morristown.
"When we invest in our workforce, it benefits the entire community. I appreciate the help of everyone who made this grant possible," said State Rep. David Hawk, R-5th, of Greeneville.
Walters State Community College played a key role in awarding the two local grants, the news release stated.
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 specific 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.