FRANKFORT, Ky. (Nov. 23, 2021) – Today, Gov. Andy Beshear provided an update on Kentucky’s workforce development efforts with funds allocated to train 6,388 individuals as the state’s economic momentum and job creation reach new heights.
The Governor announced the Bluegrass State Skills Corp. (BSSC), a group attached to the Kentucky Cabinet for Economic Development that helps private-sector businesses establish industry-specific training programs, recently approved over $3 million in funding to support training efforts at 20 facilities.
“Kentucky’s future is brighter than it has ever been, and with our current economic momentum it is vitally important that we continue to focus on building a skilled workforce that can compete with any in the U.S.,” Gov. Beshear said. “As we work to attract the jobs of tomorrow, we must ensure our workforce has the necessary training for those positions, and programs like BSSC are helping us meet that challenge.”
This month’s allocated funds bring the fiscal year 2022 total to more than $4.8 million in training funds and credits for over 10,500 trainees across nearly 40 Kentucky facilities.
Also approved was the Metropolitan College Tax Credit for just over $4.5 million to benefit more than 2,300 students.
Metro College is a joint education-workforce-economic development initiative between UPS, the University of Louisville, Jefferson Community & Technical College and Louisville Metro and State of Kentucky governments. The partnership provides students with access to tuition-free, post-secondary education and high-quality employment opportunities.
Earlier this year, Gov. Beshear reported BSSC provided approximately $6.1 million in funds and credits in fiscal year 2021 to 111 facilities across the state to train nearly 18,300 Kentucky workers.
BSSC’s Grant-in-Aid (GIA) and Skills Training Investment Credit (STIC) programs assist employers statewide. GIA provides cash reimbursements for occupational and skills upgrade training at Kentucky businesses, while STIC offers state income tax credits for companies to offset the costs for approved training programs. Applications for both programs are accepted and considered for approval by the Bluegrass State Skills Corporation Board of Directors.
BSSC incentives are available to a range of operations, including manufacturing, agribusiness, nonretail service or technology, headquarters operations, state-licensed hospital operations, coal severing and processing, alternative fuel, gasification, renewable energy production and carbon dioxide transmission pipelines.
For more information on the Bluegrass State Skills Corp. or to apply for workforce training assistance, visit ced.ky.gov/BSSC.
Kentucky’s investment in workforce development furthers recent economic momentum in the commonwealth, as the state builds back stronger in response to the effects of the pandemic.
This year, the commonwealth has shattered every economic development record in the books for yearly investment totals. Year-to-date, private-sector new-location and expansion announcements include over $10 billion in total planned investment and commitments to create 15,200-plus full-time jobs across the coming years. Through September, Kentucky’s average incentivized hourly wage is $24.15 before benefits, a 10% increase over the previous year.
In September, Gov. Beshear, Ford Motor Co. Executive Chair Bill Ford, CEO Jim Farley and Dong-Seob Jee, president of SK Innovation’s battery business, announcedthe single largest economic development project in the history of the commonwealth, celebrating a transformative $5.8 billion investment that will create 5,000 jobs and places Kentucky at the forefront of the automotive industry’s future.
In July, thanks to strong fiscal management by the Beshear administration, the state budget office reported the commonwealth ended the 2021 fiscal year with a general fund surplus of over $1.1 billion – the highest ever in the commonwealth – and a 10.9% increase in general fund receipts to $12.8 billion.
In May, Moody’s Analytics published a positive economic outlook for Kentucky, noting mass vaccination as the driving force behind a sustained recovery in consumer services. The state’s recovery, Moody’s said, benefited from earlier reopening efforts and increased demand for manufactured goods over services. The report also found Kentucky’s manufacturing industry outperformed the nation’s since the national downturn last year.
Fitch Ratings in May improved the state’s financial outlook to stable, reflecting the commonwealth’s solid economic recovery. The state’s April sales tax receipts set an all-time monthly record at $486.5 million, as did vehicle usage tax receipts at over $64 million.
In March, Site Selection magazine’s annual Governor’s Cup rankings for 2020 positioned Kentucky atop the South Central region, and third nationally, for qualifying projects per capita. The commonwealth also placed seventh overall in total projects, the highest of any state with a population under 5 million. Site Selection also recently placed Kentucky in a tie for fifth in its 2021 Prosperity Cup rankings, positioning the state among the national leaders for business climate.
Information on Kentucky’s economic development efforts and programs is available at www.CED.ky.gov. Fans of the Cabinet for Economic Development can also join the discussion at facebook.com/CEDkygov, on Twitter @CEDkygov and LinkedIn.