Wednesday, March 18, 2009

U.S. Department of Labor issues policy and planning guidance for employment and training programs under American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009

/PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- The U.S. Department of Labor today issued policy guidance to states and outlying areas for the implementation of American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 (ARRA) investments in core employment and training programs. This critical investment of $3,514,500,000 in the nation's workforce system and network of One-Stop Career Centers is intended to help unemployed Americans upgrade their skills and get back to work.

"One-Stop Career Centers have a wide array of services and resources to help workers and youth who are unemployed or underemployed," said Secretary of Labor Hilda L. Solis. "Through the One-Stops, the workforce system will play a vital role in America's economic recovery by assisting workers who are facing unprecedented challenges to retool their skills and re-establish themselves in viable career paths."

The training and employment guidance letter distributed today provides policy and direction regarding activities authorized under the Workforce Investment Act of 1998 and the Wagner Peyser Act, as funded through ARRA. The letter also provides specific instructions to states on how they can use funding under the Recovery Act to serve adults, dislocated workers and youth, and provide labor exchange services to all who need them. The workforce investment system will use Recovery Act funds to increase service levels, address immediate employment needs and spur future economic growth to advance shared prosperity for all Americans.

More information on the Department of Labor's implementation of ARRA may be found at www.doleta.gov and www.dol.gov/Recovery. Questions regarding Recovery Act funding can be e-mailed to eta.economicrecovery@dol.gov.

To find a local One-Stop Career Center or to access online resources to support job searches, career information and information on education and training resources, visit http://www.careeronestop.org/ or call the Department's toll-free helpline at 877-348-0502 or TTY 877-348-0501.

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Friday, March 13, 2009

U.S. Department of Labor proposes to suspend H-2A rule

/PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- The U.S. Department of Labor's Employment and Training Administration (ETA) today announced the proposed suspension for nine months of a final rule implementing changes to the H-2A program, which allows U.S. agricultural businesses to employ foreign workers in temporary or seasonal agricultural jobs. The department's proposed action is open for public comment for 10 days.

"Because many stakeholders have raised concerns about the H-2A regulations, this proposed suspension is the prudent and responsible action to take," said Secretary of Labor Hilda L. Solis. "Suspending the rule would allow the department to review and reconsider the regulation, while minimizing disruption to state workforce agencies, employers and workers."

The proposed suspension of the final rule will appear in the Federal Register on March 17. The final rule appeared in the Federal Register on Dec. 18, 2008, and took effect on Jan. 17, 2009.

The H-2A nonimmigrant program is designed to provide agricultural businesses with short-term foreign agricultural labor when there are not enough domestic workers. Receiving an H-2A labor certification is the first step in the employment-based immigration process to work on a farm.

In 2008, the department granted North Carolina, Georgia and Florida the largest numbers of H-2A labor certifications.

The Labor Department's Office of Foreign Labor Certification will continue to accept and process H-2A applications during the proposed suspension period. Any final action on today's proposed suspension will appear in a future Federal Register notice.

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GreenTech Manufacturing to bring 320 jobs to Coffee County

Governor Sonny Perdue recently announced that environmentally-friendly construction product maker GreenTech Manufacturing plans to locate a new facility in Douglas. The company will create 320 jobs and invest more than $20 million in a manufacturing and distribution facility.

“In Georgia, we work hard to support innovative companies such as GreenTech Manufacturing,” said Governor Perdue. “As the world focuses on green technologies and cleaner manufacturing processes, GreenTech Manufacturing is a perfect fit for our state.”

GreenTech Manufacturing has contracted a 103,000-square-foot manufacturing and distribution center located on nine acres in Douglas’s Southwest Industrial Park. GreenTech is wholly owned by Gulf Coast Arms, a nonprofit trust incorporated in Texas, whose mission is to foster sustainability and affordability solutions across the country and abroad.

GreenTech uses the innovative Powder Impression Molding (PIM) system to produce stronger-than-steel, lightweight construction products using up to 95 percent recycled materials from single-stream solid waste sources. The result is an environmentally sustainable, efficient and cost-effective alternative to traditional construction products such as metal, wood, concrete and fiberglass.

“It has been a privilege to work with the State of Georgia, whose leadership values innovation and whose involvement has been essential in bringing this project to Georgia,” stated GreenTech spokesman Michael Moreland. “Douglas’s community leadership also strongly compelled our decision to locate in Georgia. The location’s considerable transportation connectivity is ideal for GreenTech’s distribution to national and export markets. The local workforce is well trained, and the community has ample access to educational resources for ongoing innovation and job training.”

To grow roots in the local community, GreenTech will offer high-quality and high-paying administrative, technical and operational jobs that include high-tech job training and significant employee benefits. The company is working with Quick Start, East Central Technical College, the Georgia Department of Labor and Georgia Tech’s FaciliTech Team to create and implement customized workforce training. Job search and placement is expected to begin immediately, and the first PIM product to roll off the line could happen as early as September.

“This is a great day for Coffee County,” said JoAnne Lewis, executive director of the Douglas-Coffee County Chamber of Commerce. “GreenTech will become one of the city’s highest employed businesses. The company’s official announcement helps us celebrate the 50th anniversary of economic development in Douglas. Businesses like GreenTech will help us carry on our tradition of economic success and progress.”

GreenTech Manufacturing is an emerging global leader in the development and implementation of innovative composite products and recycling technologies. GreenTech will transform the building construction and industrial component manufacturing industry through its patented, revolutionary Powder Impression Molding (PIM) process and bundled technologies. With PIM, GreenTech’s innovative products further the virtues of environmentally-sustainable, long-lasting and affordable building. For more information, visit www.greentech-ga.com.


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Wednesday, March 4, 2009

Carbon Motors Corporation Announces Five US States on Short List for 10,000 New American Jobs

(BUSINESS WIRE)--Carbon Motors Corporation announced today that 5 US States have made the short list for the location of the Carbon Campus, which will house the entirety of the company’s operations. Carbon Motors is a bold, new homeland security company that has developed the Carbon E7, the world’s first purpose-built law enforcement patrol vehicle. Independent projections forecast that 10,000 new sustainable direct and indirect American jobs will be created driving a $3 billion positive economic impact over ten years in the selected region. Formal Request for Proposals (RFPs) have been issued to local, state, and federal authorities in:

* Georgia (Braselton and Pooler)
* Indiana (Connersville)
* Michigan (Plymouth)
* North Carolina (Charlotte)
* South Carolina (Greenville and Spartanburg)

“We are keeping our commitment to share transparently with the public our discussions regarding the site location for Carbon Motors as we work to foster the public-private sector collaboration needed to provide our first responders the equipment they so sorely need,” said William Santana Li, chairman and chief executive officer, Carbon Motors Corporation.

“Moreover, as we have traveled across the nation during the Pure Justice Tour, we have become even more attuned to the critical needs of our first responders and the nation as a whole. We must innovate our way out of this national crisis, show courage and leadership despite the challenges, create new American jobs quickly, secure our homeland, re-energize our industrial sector, eliminate wasteful government spending, and address our critical energy issues. The White House has called for the country’s entrepreneurs to help bring America back to its rightful glory – we are here to do exactly just that with the most visible government fleet in the country,” continued Li.

“Beyond all the benefits that the Carbon E7 provides, our country has a moral obligation to provide our nation’s 840,000 law enforcement first responders with the world-class equipment needed to secure our homeland. We look forward to working closely with the U.S. Department of Energy, the Department of Homeland Security, and the Department of Justice as well as the White House and Auto Task Force to insure that we provide our brave women and men in law enforcement the same capability, protection and support that we provide our U.S. soldiers in a theatre of war. Absolutely nothing less will suffice,” said Li.

KEY FACTS

* American Jobs – the over 450,000 law enforcement patrol vehicles that protect and secure our communities across America are not manufactured in the USA. The Carbon E7 will be produced in one of five U.S. States under consideration.
* Energy – the nation’s law enforcement government fleet burns through an estimated 1.5 billion gallons of fuel annually and emits an estimated 14 million tons of CO2; the Carbon E7 will cut that by up to 40% using clean diesel technology, also capable of running on biodiesel
* Homeland Security – over 7 years after 9-11 our country’s 840,000 law enforcement first responders continue to utilize inconsistently outfitted retail passenger vehicles meant for consumer use which do not provide the safety and performance capabilities appropriate to secure our homeland; over 2,800 law enforcement professionals across all 50 US States at the local, state, and federal level helped design the Carbon E7 to specifically address their needs in the field
* Wasteful Government Spending – unlike the U.S. Department of Defense that oversees our military operations, the country’s over 19,000 law enforcement agencies have very limited economies of scale in purchasing the equipment they need and are forced to utilize an outdated and wildly inefficient process to operate and service these vehicles in the field. Moreover, they experience unnecessarily high operating costs due to unacceptable fuel economy, poor durability, excessive service requirements, and critical safety concerns. The Carbon E7 will reduce the total life cycle costs as well as the overall taxpayer burden required to support our law enforcement operations and provide dramatic improvements in safety and effectiveness at the same time.
* Industrial Investment – Carbon Motors will invest over $350 million into developing and producing the Carbon E7, which is slated for start of production in 2012. This amount is less than 1.5% of the $25 billion administered by the U.S. Department of Energy for the Advanced Technology Vehicles Manufacturing Loan Program. Carbon Motors looks to work with federal authorities to balance the amount of backing provided to struggling legacy players with support provided to those looking to innovate and leverage best practices to reinvigorate America’s leadership in the industrial sector.

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Tuesday, March 3, 2009

Career Training Open House Offered March 8

The Emory Center for Lifelong Learning (ECLL) and Emory Professional Learning Programs are sponsoring a complimentary open house on “Reinventing Your Career” Sunday, March 8 from 1 p.m. to 4 p.m. in Building B of Emory's Briarcliff Campus, 1256 Briarcliff Rd.

The community-based initiative is aimed at providing information to those who could benefit from career-related training in these tough economic times. In addition to learning about the career track programs the center offers, ECLL will provide information about its career development classes, including resume writing, interviewing skills, career assessment and how to manage your career in uncertain times. For more information, call 404.712.3794.

Attendees also will learn more about ECLL’s career track programs, including: paralegal studies, Six Sigma Green Belt, web design and development, graphic design, computer forensics, CTT+, certified financial planning, management, human resource management, and career development and preparation.

Many of the career tracks included in the open house are listed as some of the fastest growing occupations in Georgia, according to statistics from the Georgia DOL Workforce Information and Analysis Division’s publication “Georgia Workforce Trends: An Analysis of Long-term Employment Projections to 2014.”

The ECLL programs approved for Georgia’s Workforce Investment Act (WIA) funding include the certificates in paralegal studies, financial planning, web design and web development. Continuing education loans are also available.

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