Welcome to the Massachusetts Workforce Association's monthly newsletter: Workforce Connections! Look for this publication in your inbox each month and please share with your staff and others! They can be added to our mailing list here!

In This Issue:
  • State and Federal Policy Updates
  • MWA Updates: Winter Member Meeting and Workshop Recap
  • Member Updates: Save the Date for State House Briefing, Manufacturing Training Announcements
  • News From Around the Sector - Jobs, Funding, Training, and more
State Policy Updates
Final FY19 Closeout Supplemental Budget Bill:
In the early morning hours of December 12th, the House and Senate reached a compromise on a FY19 close out supplemental budget bill. The long awaited compromised budget bill, which was recently signed by Governor Baker, included $541M in close out spending and $587M for the state's "rainy day" fund.

The FY19 closeout supplemental budget includes some additional workforce investments: (1) $400,000 for career centers; (2) $375,000 for the Workforce Competitiveness Trust Fund; and (3) $4,495,579 for the Department of Career Services. You can see the final bill here . Thank you to Speaker DeLeo, Senate President Spilka, Chairman Michlewitz, and Chairman Rodrigues for their strong support of these programs.
Federal Policy Updates
Federal FY20 Budget Deal Reached - Labor, HHS and Ed Budget Minibus Released
Yesterday the U.S. House passed two omnibus spending bills that will provide $1.4 trillion to fund the federal government through September and avoid a government shutdown. The bill to fund defense-related departments was passed on a 280-138 vote, while the one to fund non-defense agencies and extend a number of expiring tax breaks was passed on a 297-120 vote. The spending bills are the result of weeks of bipartisan talks and they are expected to pass the Senate and be signed by the President.

The negotiated Fiscal Year 2020 Labor, HHS, Education funding levels include over $2.8 billion for WIOA, which is a slight bump of about $30 million between Adult, Youth, and Dislocated Workers (more when incorporating DW National Reserve). Other important connected programs were increased as well. In addition, the agreement will extend TANF through May 22, 2020.

Click here to view a comparison of FY19 and FY20 WIOA funding levels and here to review the language for the Training and Employment Services portion of the FY20 Labor, HHS, Education Report.
MWA Winter Member Meeting & Workshop Recap
Thank you to everyone who joined us for our 2019 MWA Winter Member Meeting and Workshop. After a nice lunch and time for networking with colleagues from around the state, we heard from Salem State University President and former state legislator, John D. Keenan about how higher education and workforce development are key to successful regional economic growth.

Next Stefanie Coxe of Nexus Werx ( @learntolobby) held an interactive workshop about how to engage board members and customers in advocacy. In addition, she provided insight and materials to help members better integrate advocacy efforts into their organizations and answered questions about the difference between lobbying and advocacy.

Thank you to everyone who joined us and we hope everyone has a wonderful Holiday and a safe and healthy New Year!
Save the Date: MWA State House Briefing
MWA is organizing a State House Briefing on Career Centers which will be held on Wednesday, February 26th from 11 a.m. to 12 p.m. in Room 428 . Please save the date so you can join us. More details will be released soon!
Baker-Polito Administration and GE Announce $4.5 Million in Workforce Investments on the North Shore
Congratulations to the MassHire North Shore Workforce Board and the Northeast Advanced Manufacturing Consortium (which includes MassHire Merrimack Valley, MassHire Greater Lowell and MassHire Metro North workforce boards) on the commitment by the GE Foundation to co-invest with the state on workforce training in the region. This investment will reach 900 high school students and adults over the next 5 years.

To read more click here for the press release and here for the article in the Boston Globe (pay wall).
2020 MassHire Award Nominations
The 2020 MassHire Awards Nominations have been released. Nominations for the 2020 MassHire Awards are being accepted through January 31, 2020 . The awards will recognize exceptional innovations in workforce delivery across five categories: collaboration, respect, reliability, ingenuity and living MassHire. Workforce board directors or their designees are asked to participate in a mandatory webinar on January 15th. To register, click here . The nomination package can be found here .
Baker-Polito Administration Announces $2.5M in Advanced Manufacturing Training Grants
Four regional manufacturing training consortia, led by MassHire Workforce Boards, were awarded grants by the Executive Office of Housing and Economic Development for FY20 on December 10th. With this funding, the four workforce development consortia will train more than 540 unemployed and under-employed residents in advanced manufacturing

To read the press release, click here.
Career Center Highlights Shared at MassHire DCS Partners Meeting
At the December 4th Partners Meeting, several career centers shared success stories and projects they have been working on including:
  • MassHire Franklin Hampshire Career Center taking inspiration from MassHire Downtown Boston and creating customer story boards to feature success stories around their office to inspire other jobseekers.
  • MassHire Metro North Career Centers devoting a direct phone line to the business service representatives (BSRs) in their offices to help create easier access to these staff for businesses.
  • MassHire Merrimack Valley Career Center working on teambuilding through a special staff appreciation breakfast prepared jointly by state and local leadership.
  • MassHire Berkshire Career Center being invited to support the Mayor of Pittsfield's Red Carpet Team to help Wayfair find the talent they need for their new call center.

The stories above and countless more that go on every day, not only highlight the importance of the workforce system, but they can be helpful advocacy tools. MWA will continue to work across the workforce system and its partners to better share and highlight the best practices and success stories of our workforce system.

  • Job Opportunity - MassHire North Shore Workforce Board is hiring a program manager for the Northeast Advanced Manufacturing Consortium (NAMC). Click here to learn more and apply.

  • Job Opportunity - Commonwealth Corporation is hiring a President/CEO. Click here to learn more and apply.

  • Request for Input - The MassHire State Workforce Board is requesting input to this draft presentation of the WIOA State Plan by December 18th. To download the presentation click here. Contact Cheryl Scott and/or Sacha Stadhard with feedback.

  • RFP for Evaluation Services - MassHire North Shore Workforce Board and the Northeast Advanced Manufacturing Consortium, in partnership with the GE Foundation, is looking for an evaluator for their local advanced manufacturing training programs. To read the RFP click here.

  • Funding Opportunity - Commonwealth Corporation released the YouthWorks Summer 2020 and Year-Round 2020-2021 Application. An intent to apply form must be submitted by December 23rd, and the online application portal will open January 6th. Click here to learn more.

  • Funding Opportunity - State funding is now available to offset the costs related to technical instruction for registered apprenticeships in expansion industries (including health care, manufacturing and IT). The goal is to increase RA in these industries and diversify the existing apprenticeship workforce. To learn more, read the issuance here.

  • ReMAke 4.0 Website Release - The ReMAke 4.0 manufacturing promotion campaign was recently launched with the following website. If your region is interested in promoting its manufacturing careers and training programs on the site, contact MassHire North Central Workforce Board Director, Jeff Roberge.

  • MassHire Berkshire Workforce Board was featured in this article as partners in a recent Sen. Kenneth J. Donnelly Workforce Success grant (Workforce Competitiveness Trust Fund) award for CNA training.

  • MassHire Greater New Bedford Workforce Board welcomed six new board members recently. To read the news article in Southcoast Today, click here.

  • MassHire Lowell Career Center is highlighted in the Lowell Sun as part of the regional partnership awarded a Sen. Kenneth J. Donnelly Workforce Success grant (Workforce Competitiveness Trust Fund) to train medical assistants.

  • Training Opportunity - WIOA - There will be WIOA Title 1 Adult, Dislocated Worker, and Youth trainings offered by MDCS in Worcester (March 13) and Springfield (June 12). For more information, you can find the issuance here or click here to register.

  • Training Opportunity - Federal Bonding - MDCS will be offering two webinars to help workforce boards, career centers and other partners learn more about accessing bonds for businesses that hire individuals with a criminal record. They will be held Thursday, December 19 and Monday, January 6. To read the issuance click here. To register click here.

  • Jobs for the Future released the slides from their recent webinar on The Essentials of a High Quality Pre-Apprenticeship Program. To download the slides, click here.

  • National Fund for Workforce Solutions CareerSTAT has announced the latest cohort of their Health Care Workforce Development Academy, including Brigham and Women's Hospital. To read the announcement click here. To read more about their Guide for Investing in Frontline Health Care Workers, click here.

  • Conference: LearnLaunch is holding its 2020 Across Boundaries Conference on January 20-21, 2020. They will be sharing the cutting edge of learning and teaching with educators, entrepreneurs, investors, and innovators from across pre-K to mature learner. To register and learn more, go here.

  • NAWB Convening on Disaster Resiliency - NAWB will be holding a convening: Beacon of Resiliency: Setting the Standard for Workforce Development Boards' Disaster Response on January 8-9 in Florida. Click here to learn more and register.

  • NASWA Winter Policy Forum will be held Wednesday, February 12th in Washington, D.C. To learn more, click here.

  • American Association of Community Colleges Workforce Development Institute is being held January 22-25 in Amelia Island, FL. To learn more and register, click here.

  • Building Quality RFPs for WIOA Youth Program Services Brief - provides key elements for building a quality RFP to support comprehensive services to youth in the Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act (WIOA) Youth program. As part of this RFP technical assistance, DOL shared WIOA State and Local Youth Program RFP Examples representing different approaches for acquiring providers of WIOA Youth program services and include general WIOA Youth program requests. These samples also focus on specific strategies or populations, such as career pathways, entrepreneurship, foster care, youth one-stop model, post-secondary education, pre-apprenticeship, and summer. 

  • The Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) has partnered with the U.S. Department of Labor's Chief Information Officer to develop a new CareerInfo app to help job seekers access occupational outlook information, wages and other employment information. To learn more, read about the release here.

  • The Brookings Institute released a report on What Jobs Are Affected by AI? The report discusses how better paid, better educated workers face the most exposure.
MWA is on social media! Follow us on Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn for the latest workforce news and updates.