Rep. Braun: House passes bill to strengthen Indiana’s workforce

Posted by: Zach Weismiller  | Monday, February 27, 2017 6:00 pm

STATEHOUSE (Feb. 27, 2017) – The Indiana House of Representatives voted Monday in support of legislation co-authored by State Rep. Mike Braun (R-Jasper) to attract, retain and improve Indiana’s workforce.

House Bill 1008 would create the Workforce Ready Grant for high-value certificates from either Ivy Tech Community College or Vincennes University. These grants would cover any remaining costs after state and federal financial aid for a student pursuing certification in high-demand, high-wage fields. The bill also seeks to increase enrollment in the Adult Student Grant, which encourages and helps adults go back to college to complete their degree.

“Although Indiana leads the nation for its business climate and regulatory environment, we currently have a shortage of highly-trained and skilled workers to fill the positions being created,” Braun said. “In order to strengthen the state’s workforce, it’s critical we better align education and training with current and future employer needs. This bill would provide incentives for Hoosiers to obtain a degree or certificate in high-wage, high-demand fields, while also working to streamline the state’s workforce development programs.”

Braun said the legislation requires the governor to develop a comprehensive workforce development plan to restructure state workforce programs. In addition, the bill would require specific and uniform success metrics for all workforce-related programs in Indiana. Along with annual reporting requirements to the governor and legislature, this would provide a better picture of the state’s return-on-investment for these programs as well as identify areas needing improvement.

This bill now moves to the Senate for further consideration.

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State Rep. Mike Braun (R-Jasper) represents portions of Daviess, Dubois, Pike and Martin counties.

A high-resolution photo of Braun can be downloaded by clicking here.