2004-04-15 / Business & Finance

Governor Unveils $19.5 Million ‘NY Smart’ Initiative Program

Governor Unveils $19.5 Million ‘NY Smart’ Initiative Program

Governor Unveils $19.5 Million ‘NY Smart’ Initiative Program

New Job-Training Program Will Support Manufacturers Workforce Ef-forts Initiative is Part of Governor’s Aggressive 5-Pt. Plan to Strengthen NY’s Manufacturers

Governor George E. Pataki last week announced the creation of a new $19.5 million New York Skilled Manufactu-ring Resource Training (NY SMART) program. The announcement delivers on a pledge the Governor made in his State of the State Address in January to create a new targeted jobtraining program that will help New York’s manufacturers create jobs and foster the most skilled and productive workforce in the nation.

The NY SMART program will provide new job training assistance to help small, medium and large manufacturing firms to upgrade the skills of new and incumbent workers.

"As we move forward with our aggressive five-point plan to strengthen New York’s vital ill Manufacturing sector, ensuring that our State’s manufacturers can create new jobs and have the best trained workforce in America must be one of our highest priorities," Governor Pataki said. "Our new NY SMART initiative will provide New York’s manufacturers with the support they need for job training, which will increase their competitiveness, expand their businesses and most importantly create new jobs for New Yorkers.

The creation of this new targeted manufacturing job-training assistance program is one of the five key components of Governor Pataki’s new plan to strengthen New York’s manufacturers. Recently, the Governor unveiled another critical element of his manufacturing plan dramatic new reforms to the State’s workers’ compensation system that would reduce workers com-pensation costs for businesses by more than 15 percent.

Other key components of the Gov-ernor’s new manufacturing plan include: providing a new "Single Sales Factor" tax benefit for manufacturers; extending the highly successful Power for Jobs program; and creating a new Manufacturing Assistance Program - MAP - that will coordinate Federal, State, and local assistance programs and will link manufacturing companies to the appropriate research and development grant funding.

SMART 100 grants are now available, with $11 million in allocated fund-ing, to assist manufacturing firms em-ploying 100 or more workers. These firms can apply for worker training grants of up to $200,000.

To be considered for an award, a firm must be a private-sector, for-profit manufacturing business, have fewer than 100 employees working in New York State and be headquartered or have at least one physical location in New York State at the time of the ap-plication. To qualify for an award, man-agement staff must attend a free De-partment of Labor-sponsored seminar on Lean Manufacturing or Six Sigma, or have received equivalent train-ing within a year. Contracts be awarded for a period of one year and applications must be received no later than June 30, 2005.

Documents and details pertaining to the NY SMART grants can be found on Workforce New York’s website at www. workforcenewyork.com. In addi-tion, interested firms can call 1-800-HIRE-992 for more information.

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