Part of Gov. Charlie Baker's upcoming budget plan will include $5 million to support job training for populations with high unemployment rates.
In the upcoming budget recommendations, Baker plans to include funds to create a new public workforce system to complement the federal government's efforts to find suitable jobs for workers facing higher-than-normal unemployment, according to a Baker administration official.
According to Baker's proposal, the $5 million will go to community-based organizations and other groups that work with businesses to improve job training and job searching for populations that have higher particular barriers to employment.
The funding recommendation is the result of Baker's Task Force On Persons Facing Chronically Higher Rates of Unemployment, which launched in March of last year and was tasked with finding ways to combat high rates of unemployment within Black, Latino and Native American communities, as well as among recently-returned military veterans and the disabled.
According to Baker's Labor and Workforce Development office, the unemployment rate among those groups ranged between 7 to 12 percent, while the state as a whole has an unemployment rate of 4.7, as of December.
A new Economic Opportunity Fund, marked by Baker for a $2 million budget, will be designed to support community-based organizations that partner with businesses to boost job training and hiring opportunities. Another $2 million will contribute to the Workforce Competitiveness Trust Fund, which targets unemployed or underemployed workers in need of training or education. The last $1 million will focus on job training for former criminal offenders released from prison to help them transition to employment.
The rest of Baker's fiscal year 2017 budget recommendations are set to be released Wednesday.