The final days of the 2013 session brought great news for Iowans who want to do more for their families, and for Iowa businesses in need of skilled employees.
Thanks to the largest investment ever in our community colleges, Iowans will get the chance to improve their skills, qualify for better jobs and fill openings at local businesses. A pilot project has shown this approach works. That’s why we’re investing more than $34 million to take it statewide.
Community colleges will be the place to go for Iowans who need to get their GED, learn basic skills, and earn industry-recognized certificates in welding, health care, technology and other areas. Job training highlights from the bipartisan Education Budget (HF 604) include:
• Workforce Training and Economic Development Fund: $15.3 million to support job-training efforts by community colleges.
• Adult Basic Education Programs: $5.5 million to help adult workers get the credentials to qualify for middle-skill jobs.
• PACE Career Pathways Program: $5 million to coordinate training and education programs that enable returning students to get the workforce skills they need to fill local job openings.
• Gap Assistance Program: $2 million to “fill the gap” in financial aid by helping Iowans take non-credit classes to earn certifications and professional licenses.
• Work-based Learning Intermediary Program: $1.5 million to provide high school students with career orientation, job shadowing and internship opportunities that allow them to make informed college and career decisions.
• Kibbie Grant Program: $5 million to provide need-based financial assistance to Iowans enrolled in career and technical courses at our community colleges.
This is a legislative update from Senator Rich Taylor, representing Henry and Lee counties and portions of Washington and Jefferson counties. For newsletters, photos and further information, go to www.senate.iowa.gov/senator/taylor.
To contact Senator Taylor during session, call the Senate Switchboard at 515-281-3371. Otherwise he can be reached at home at 319-931-1568. E-mail him at email@example.com.
Senator Taylor is vice-chair of the Agriculture Committee. He also serves on the Economic Growth, Judiciary, Local Government and Transportation committees, as well as the Justice Systems Budget Subcommittee.