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The 192nd General Court of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts

Section 57: Program to support training and education programs that address workforce shortages of advanced automotive and diesel technician industry

Section 57. Subject to appropriation, the board of higher education shall establish and maintain, in cooperation with local public and vocational school authorities, postsecondary technical schools and the boards of trustees of community colleges, a program to support training and education programs that address the workforce shortages of the advanced automotive and diesel technician industry with the goal of training students, creating new jobs, retaining and upgrading existing jobs, and retraining existing workers to implement new technologies and to help meet the workforce and talent pipeline needs of employers including, but not limited to, a person who has obtained a Class 1 license pursuant to sections 58 and 59 of chapter 140.

There shall be, subject to appropriation, a grant program to implement this section to which employers shall have access to:

(i) identify, support or establish collaborative regional partnerships including, but not limited to, employers, workforce development and education organizations, regional economic development organizations established pursuant to sections 3J and 3K of chapter 23A and economic development officials in every region where Class 1 licensees and related industries demonstrate demand for automotive and diesel repair technicians;

(ii) address critical workforce shortages in the automotive and diesel repair industry;

(iii) improve and increase employment opportunities in the automotive and diesel repair industry for low-income individuals, women and minorities;

(iv) provide training and educational or career ladder services for employed or unemployed automotive and diesel repair workers who are seeking new positions or responsibilities within the automotive and diesel repair industry;

(v) increase support for internship and apprentice training at facilities associated with Class 1 licensees;

(vi) boost industry-relevant instructor capacity for high school and postsecondary programs; and

(vii) direct support for succession planning, worker retention and upskilling strategies for older and incumbent workers.

For the purposes of the grant program, ''eligible applicants'' shall include, but not be limited to: (i) employers and employer associations; (ii) local workforce investment boards; (iii) institutions of higher education; (iv) kindergarten to grade 12, inclusive, and vocational education institutions; (v) private for-profit and nonprofit organizations providing education and workforce training; (vi) 1–stop career centers; (vii) local workforce development entities; and (viii) any partnership or collaboration between eligible applicants. Any funds allocated through the program shall complement and not replace existing local, state, private or federal funding for training and educational programs.

A grant proposal submitted pursuant to this section shall include, but not be limited to:

(i) a plan that defines specific goals for advanced automotive and diesel repair technology workforce training and educational improvements;

(ii) the evidence-based programs the applicant shall use to meet the goals;

(iii) a budget necessary to implement the plan, including a detailed description of any funding or in-kind contributions that an applicant will be providing in support of the proposal;

(iv) any other private funding or private sector participation that the applicant anticipates in support of the proposal; and

(v) the proposed number of individuals who would be enrolled, complete training and be placed into employment in the targeted industries.

The board of higher education shall, in consultation with the executive office of housing and economic development, executive office of labor and workforce development, the department of education and entities representing parties who are eligible to participate in the grant program, develop guidelines for an annual review of the progress being made by each grantee. A grantee shall participate in any evaluation or accountability process implemented by or authorized by the commonwealth corporation. The board shall file annual reports for the duration of the programs with the chairs of the house and senate committee on ways and means, the chairs of the joint committee on labor and workforce development and the chairs of the joint committee on economic development and emerging technologies not later than January 1; provided, however, that the report shall include an overview of the activities of the programs, the number of participants in the programs and the employment outcomes in the programs.