DATE: April 17, 2001      NO:  01-49

CONTACT:  Gerry McDonagh PHONE: (907) 269-4551 

Department of Labor and Workforce Development

News Release

LABOR ANNOUNCES SECOND ROUND OF DENALI TRAINING FUNDS
Total Amount of Funds Awarded to Date Equals $750,000

The Denali Training Fund recently awarded $265,000 to help rural residents get the skills they need for jobs in their villages, according to the Department of Labor and Workforce Development, which administers the grants. Nearly 100 Alaskans will be trained to do a variety of jobs including bulk fuel tank operation, heavy equipment operation, building diagnostic technician, hazardous waste and asbestos abatement, construction technology and building maintenance and repair.

The eight grants were awarded to:

 The Alaska Energy Authority, $20,000, to train 8 students on bulk fuel operator training at the Alaska Vocational Technical Center (AVTEC). Additional funding requests will be based on slots needed for specific training.

Alaska Operating Engineers/Employer Training Trust, $100,000, to train 15 participants from rural communities on the basics of heavy equipment operation. 

Buckland/Deering/Selawick, $20,000, for ENTECH to train 6 local residents in building diagnostics. The training will allow workers to analyze building plans of proposed new construction for projected energy usage and to compare bids, and project operating and maintenance costs. 

Igiugig Village Council, $25,000, to train 12 local residents in heavy equipment operation and Bush CDL. AVTEC will provide the training which will consist of 4 intensive weeks combining instruction with actual job experience.

Knik Tribal Council, $20,000 pending Department of Defense contract, to train 14 local residents in hazardous waste, asbestos abatement, and CPR/first aid. 

City of Sand Point, $10,000, to train 3 local residents in heavy equipment operation. This training will result in jobs as the city has many projects scheduled for this summer, as well into 2003.

Central Council Tlingit & Haida Indian Tribes of Alaska, $45,000, to train 10 local residents from the communities of Wrangell and Yakutat in construction targeting construction worker/laborer and carpenter’s assistant.

White Mountain/St. Michaels, $25,000, for the Alaska Works Partnership to train 30 local residents in building, maintenance and repair step-up program for building and installing Bering Straits Housing Authority homes. 

The awards were made from 20 applications submitted by communities and agencies. Those not funded, mainly because of insufficient information, will receive technical assistance from staff clarifying on the training objectives and other training possibilities or recommendations on how to improve their applications for future funding cycles. The successful applications have an average cost of less than $3,000 per participant. 

Total funds awarded through the Denali Training Fund with this round equals $750,000, leaving the fund with a balance of $75,000. The remaining money will be used in a new ongoing program to train a specified number of people in skills for which there is continuing demand—fuel tank operation, commercial driver licenses, and heavy equipment operation. 

The Alaska Native Coalition on Employment and Training will be responsible for recruiting rural residents for the open slots.


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