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County board approves accepting worker support funds

Washington County Commissioners voted 5-0 May 5 to authorize the county to apply for federal stimulus dollars to assist unemployed or underemployed county residents in securing full employment.

The federal funds, which would come out of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA) of 2009, will be used to increase the number of people in job training programs by 70 percent and substantially increase the number of low skilled or low income workers in acquiring 21st century work skills and help laid-off workers and low income families find good paying jobs in healthy industries, county officials said.

The funds will be targeted to dislocated workers (a person who has lost a job through no fault of their own, such as by downsizing), adults, youth, and seniors.

The federal ARRA funds are to be used mostly during 2009, but within 18 months and to be spent concurrently with previously allocated workforce program funds.