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Incumbent Workforce grants available

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10.08.2013College & CommunityCollege General

SANFORD - The Triangle South Workforce Development Board is accepting applications for the North Carolina Incumbent Workforce Development Program grant.

North Carolina for-profit and not-for-profit businesses are invited to apply. Applicants must have been in operation for a minimum of one year prior to the application date, are current on all federal and state tax obligations, and are financially viable.

The North Carolina Incumbent Workforce Development Program is a competitive, retention solutions grant. Qualifying businesses can use this grant to address employees' skills gaps, resulting in increased knowledge, certifications, and value to the company. Addressing employees' skills gaps also contributes to a company's competitiveness in regional and global economies.

"The Incumbent Workforce Grant offers an amazing opportunity for local employers to partner with the Triangle South Workforce Development Board to keep people on the job and to drive new skills and opportunities into their organizations and businesses," said Mike Peluso, TSWDB Business Services coordinator. "Our biggest challenge with the grant is that not enough people know about it so we are doing everything we can to increase awareness of it."

Training must directly benefit the worker, resulting in qualifying for a job with different skill requirements or for a higher-paying position. The training must enable workers to obtain an industry-recognized certification or credential, or provide a significant step towards achieving credentials that increase overall employability.

An incumbent worker, as defined by the grant, is at least 18 years of age, a United States citizen or a non-citizen whose status permits employment in the U.S., and a paid employee of the applicant business or working for the business as a staffing agency employee.

IWDP funds are awarded on a competitive basis. The maximum amount is $25,000 per funding round, with a lifetime funding limit of $40,000. The state has authorized two funding rounds per program year.

Lee County Industries, Inc., in Sanford, is a previous recipient of an IWDP grant. Executive Director Meg Moss knows how valuable the grant can be.

"LCI staff really benefitted from the IWDP," she said. "We received training in several computer applications so we could streamline paperwork processes. This will save LCI money in order to keep our staff employed. We also benefitted from disability-specific training so that our staff are best suited to work with the population we serve."

The Triangle South Workforce Development Board is headquartered at Central Carolina Community College's Lifelong Learning Center at the W.B. Wicker Business Campus. It serves residents and businesses in Chatham, Harnett, Lee and Sampson counties. It is based on and implements the Workforce Investment Act, which was established by Congress in 1998 to increase employment, job retention, earnings, and occupational skills.

Visit to access the grant application. Applications may be mailed or hand delivered to the office of Mike Peluso, TSWDB Business Services coordinator, 900 South Vance St., Suite 280, Sanford, by the close of business on Monday, Oct. 14. The mailing address is: Triangle South Workforce Development Board, Incumbent Workforce Development Program, 1105 Kelly Drive, Sanford, NC 27330.

The TSWDB will rank the applications according to required criteria and submit them to the N.C. Division of Workforce Development for final review and selection. The number of awards approved per round is based on funding availability as determined by the Division.

For more information regarding the IWDP grant application or other Workforce Investment Act programs, contact Mike Peluso at 919-777-7725 or by email at