State leaders are hoping a newly approved trust fund will help create jobs in Mississippi.
"Alright it is law," said Governor Phil Bryant as he signed Senate Bill 2808, otherwise known as the Mississippi Works Fund, into law at a ceremony at the Capitol yesterday. The program will take surplus money from the state's unemployment compensation fund and give it to community colleges for workforce development and training.
The Governor says the fund shows business and industry leaders that Mississippi is committed to creating a well-trained workforce.
"We need people who can work in the automobile industry and the aerospace industry and coding, information technology industries," says Bryant. "These are people we are looking for to put in these jobs, and this bill will help do that."
The program will provided community colleges with $10 million this year and then five million each subsequent year. Mississippi Economic Council President Blake Wilson the program will remove a lot of bureaucratic red tape from developing workforce training projects.
"You have to go to the legislature and have them appropriate money or beg borrow and steal from other agencies. That took time. This way the decision can be made at the bargaining table, 'Yes, we're going to provide those dollars.' We don't have to say 'We've go to go check with three other people."
The Mississippi Works Fund is a scaled down version of a $50 million dollar workforce development bill that died in the legislature last year.