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SANTA ANA : Job-Training Program Gets a Nearly $1-Million Boost

October 05, 1994|LEE ROMNEY

The city's federally funded job-training program has received nearly $1 million in unanticipated funds that will go to retrain displaced workers, hire two staff people to work with new clients and create more job programs in Santa Ana high schools, city officials said.

At Monday's regular meeting, the City Council approved the new positions and added $112,720 in federal money recently earmarked for displaced workers to the city's current budget.

That funding, combined with nearly $900,000 that carried over from last year's budget, means 200 additional clients will be served this coming year, said Cindy Nelson, executive director of the city's community development agency.

"Quite honestly, one of our fastest growing programs in the agency is the job-training program, and that growth is really attributed to the Clinton Administration," Nelson said.

Nelson's department had originally believed that 662 clients would be served by the Job Training Partnership Act funds in the 1994-95 fiscal year, but now she said 882 people will receive services.

"This is a big caseload for us," she said. "That's why we went for another two positions. We're at maximum capacity."

The city will hire a full-time "re-employment coordinator" to identify displaced workers in need of retraining and match them with Santa Ana businesses that are hiring under the city's enterprise zone, Nelson said. That position was funded part time last year, but the new Clinton Administration funding has nearly tripled the retraining budget, she said.

The city will also hire an intake specialist to work with other clients, Nelson said.

The funding boost brings the city's 1994-95 Job Training Partnership Act allocation to more than $5 million and will enable the city to work closely with the school district and the Orange County Community Congregation Organization to design job-training programs for youth, she added.

"We've just gone through a whole brainstorming session with OCCCO to try to develop ideas for youth in the community, to get them employed," Nelson said. "We see this as an opportunity to fund programs to serve the kids we are concerned about."

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