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Chamber Board Backs Job Training, Nursing Degrees

The Traverse City Area Chamber of Commerce Board of Director recently backed pending legislation in the state Senate designed to continue closing the talent gap across Northern Michigan. The Chamber endorsed the continuation of a jobs training program scheduled to expire in 2018 that reimburses community colleges for the cost of job training programs from state income tax dollars on the new jobs that are created.

The Chamber’s Government Relations Committee endorsed the proposal, after meeting with Northwestern Michigan College Vice president Marguerite Cotto. Chamber Government Relations Director Kent Wood said NMC has provided more than $2.5 million in job training since 2010, involving more than 500 jobs in the area. A pair of state Senate bills would extend the program beyond its planned “sunset” in 2018, and remove an existing cap on job training contracts.

Also endorsed by the Chamber board was a proposal in the state Senate to allow community colleges to establish 4-year nursing education programs and grant bachelor of science degrees in nursing. That proposal was also endorsed by the Chamber’s Government Relations Committee, to help deal with the critical nursing shortage in Michigan and specifically in the Northern Michigan region.

For more information, contact Kent Wood at kentw@tcchamber.org