Manufacturers applaud new Skilled Trades Training Fund Law

The Skilled Trades Training Fund has leveraged nearly $1 billion since its inception and is a vital funding source for employers looking to train and upskill their workforce.”

The Michigan Manufacturers Association (MMA) and leaders of Michigan manufacturing companies applauded Governor Rick Snyder’s signing yesterday, 6/28/18, of Senate Bill 946 (Senator Ken Horn, R-Frankenmuth), which ensures the ongoing operation of the Skilled Trades Training Fund (STTF) program. Since FY 2014, the STTF has provided $72.9 million in competitive awards to more than 2,000 Michigan companies for short-term training that enhances talent, productivity and employment retention. The Legislature was near-unanimous in its support for the popular program.

“The Skilled Trades Training Fund has leveraged nearly $1 billion since its inception and is a vital funding source for employers looking to train and upskill their workforce,” said Chuck Hadden, MMA president & CEO. “As Michigan enjoys its lowest unemployment rate in nearly two decades, skilled talent is a scarce resource. The STTF is a training mechanism coveted by states across the country and its continued growth will improve the competitiveness of Michigan employers and of our state as a whole.”

Funding for skilled trades training has been provided for in annual appropriations bills. To ensure ongoing operations of the effective and popular STTF program, legislation was needed to codify the program in statute. SB 946 also continues the evolution of the program to respond to employer and workforce demand.

MMA commended Governor Snyder and his administration for their commitment to developing and growing this impactful training program.

“The Skilled Trades Training Program has a strong track record of developing talent and helping to close the talent gap,” Governor Snyder said. “By codifying it into law, we can help ensure the program is preserved well into the future.”

SB 946 will also change the name of the STTF program to the “Going Pro Talent Program” to better reflect the broad nature of the talent being trained and to better communicate the significance of the professional trades.

“MMA would like to thank Senator Ken Horn for recognizing the importance of maintaining and growing this innovative program to build Michigan’s talent pool,” said Delaney McKinley, MMA senior director of government affairs and membership. “His leadership on this bill is critical to ensuring that the Skilled Trades Training Fund will continue to generate public-private partnerships between employers and Michigan’s workforce development system to design training models that adapt in real time with changing employer demand.”