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Companies Sought to Participate in Transportation Program to Connect Workers to Jobs

Article from the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, Stephanie Morse 

The application period opened Thursday for a state grant program aimed at connecting workers to transportation that can get them to and from jobs.

Companies can apply for funds to help cover the costs of vanpool systems, ridesharing and carpool programs, shuttles or similar models connecting workers with employment.

The grants are being made available through the state’s Commute to Careers program. There is $8 million in funding available.

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“Transportation remains a significant barrier to employment for some workers, and this issue is not unique to Wisconsin,” Department of Workforce Development Secretary Ray Allen said in a statement. “We are providing a solution that will open the door of economic opportunity for more workers, as well as help employers meet their demand for skilled talent.”

Many employers have been struggling to fill job vacancies in recent months amid record low unemployment.

A total of $5 million is available through the DWD’s Wisconsin Fast Forward program. The program is open to “entities that demonstrate a critical need to transport unemployed, low- and moderate-income workers to employment opportunities in Wisconsin.”

Another $3 million is available through a vehicle grant from the Wisconsin Department of Transportation for nonprofits and local public bodies that serve low-income residents.

All grants require a 20 percent match.

The deadline to apply is Sept 5. Awards will be announced Oct. 1. 

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