Governor Kathy Hochul recently announced a $350 million initiative in aid to support employer-driven, high-skilled workforce training programs.

The workforce initiative seeks to boost economic growth and employ highly skilled job seekers. The Executive Director of CSS Workforce New York, Phyllis Balliet, said the funds can benefit the community.

“I think that bringing money into the community, it’s a great thing to address the training needs of jobseekers and creating a pipeline for businesses,” said Balliet.

The unemployment rate in New York State is nearly 5%, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, down more than 3% since March 2021.

“We’ve worked very closely with our training providers, with the economic developer in our region, in our area,” said Balliet. “We’ve always had a good relationship and worked together on different projects as they came up,” she added.

Balliet said she believes the grant is a step forward in the right direction.

“I think it will be a great start to helping the unemployment rate,” said Balliet. “All the partners in this area, they work together to provide the training and meet the business need,” she added. “So you know, reaching out for that training for anyone who’s on employment or currently employed, looking to upscale their skills, to be sure to reach out to us,” Balliet concluded.

Balliet said the foot traffic has increased in the career center and that they will host a recruitment in the Hornell area on May 5th.