Holcomb Signs Workforce Development Bills


WISH- Wednesday morning, Governor Eric Holcomb signed two workforce development bills into law.

One of the bills creates a new 21-member workforce development cabinet.

The other helps usher in a host of new training programs, aimed at helping out of work Hoosiers sharpen their skills.

A struggle just to make ends meet.

Brian Wilson was thrown into one of the toughest ten months of his life after he lost his job in 2016.

Wilson explained “There was some apprehension. Number one, based on age. I don’t feel like I’m 56, and I don’t see it until I look in the mirror.”

He clawed his way through, scraping by on hope and prayer while caring for his then 9 year old son,

Wilson explained “Just having to be honest and explain that we can’t always go to McDonald’s. When I’d go shopping, I’d go shopping for the purpose of us having food so we’re not eating through a window. I just didn’t have the money.”

Fast forward to Wednesday.. and the signing of the bills meant to help people who find themselves in that position.

Fred Payne Commissioner of the Indiana Department of Workforce Development  explained “Better alignment of our funding and training dollars to get money directly into the hands of employers.”  

Employ Indy said, for example, someone who’s unemployed or looking for a new job could get computer coding training, then be eligible to apply for a higher-skilled job.

Governor Eric Holcomb  explained “It’s all about people. We’re focused on how to do we scale up people from early in life and when they get that ticket to success in their hand when they graduate from high school, then if they go on for 2 years or 4 years into training or directly into a career.”

High-demand careers that have worker shortages, are something the bills also address. Cummins has some of those open careers, but.

Cathy Van Way, Cummins’ Head of Government relations  said “We are seeing a shortage of technical workers, particularly diesel technicians. But, we’re also seeing a workforce that’s beginning to age. As baby boomers retire, we’re not seeing that same pipeline of workers come back in to fill those jobs.”

Now, Wilson teaches training at Employ Indy. The same place that helped him, is where he helps others.

“Be patient,” Wilson said. “Give yourself a break.”

About Wednesday’s bill signing, Indiana Speaker of the House, Indianapolis Republican Brian Bosma, said

“We made significant progress on many issues this session, including matching our state’s top business climate with incentives and opportunities for Hoosiers to enhance their work skills. Our team continues to focus on connecting more Hoosiers to high-wage, high-demand jobs, which are coming to our state in droves.

With the signing of these legislative priorities, our state is moving from planning to implementation to keep Indiana’s economic engine running strong.”

One of The Governor’s spokespeople told me today that bill that creates the new cabinet takes effect Wednesday. That other bill that lays the groundwork for those programs, takes effect July first.

If you are looking for a job, click here to be taken to the Indiana Career Ready website.

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