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COUNTYWIDE FOCUS

Veterans Jobs Plan Offers Incentives

September 15, 1993|JEFF McDONALD

Ventura County employers willing to train veterans for career-track jobs may be eligible for up to $12,000 in salary reimbursements under a new federal program designed to promote private-sector hiring of Desert Storm troops.

The Service Members Occupational Conversion and Training Act of 1992 provided $75 million nationwide to employers who would train former military personnel for civilian jobs.

The hiring plan went into effect last month.

"It's a dynamite program for both the veteran and the employer," said Jeri Moler of the Ventura office of the state Employment Development Department, which is administering the plan in California.

"It gives the veteran an opportunity to get into a position that he might otherwise not be able to train for, and at the same time it will give employers incentive to hire veterans," he said. "Hopefully, it will be a good marriage."

To qualify for the program, veterans must have served in the armed forces after Aug. 2, 1990--the day Iraqi forces invaded Kuwait.

Eligible veterans also must either have been unemployed for eight of the past 15 weeks, suffer from a service-connected disability or have been trained in military skills not needed in the private sector, Moler said.

Moler said he has spent most of the past month contacting employers and veterans groups about the government training offer.

"I'm out knocking on doors, trying to match the veteran with that particular job," he said.

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