WARREN COUNTY, N.Y. (NEWS10) – This week, new workforce projects and initiatives in Warren County are getting a boost. The county Board of Supervisors has approved $523,000 in funds from the American Rescue Plan Act that will reinforce staffing, salary boosts and more.

“Our region is far from alone in dealing with workforce challenges that began during the early weeks of the pandemic, and members of the Warren County Board of Supervisors are committed to doing whatever we can to alleviate the issues we are seeing today while preparing our local workforce for the years to come,” said Warren County Board of Supervisors Chairman Kevin Geraghty.

The funds will be split across six different programs, all directed by the Warren County Employment & Training Administration. The administration proposed candidate programs to the board of supervisors’ ARPA Advisory Committee.

Recipients include:

  • $250,000 will be allocated by Warren County Employment & Training to pay and provide benefits to a staff member who will work with county school districts, local industries, and Washington-Saratoga-Warren-Hamilton-Essex BOCES to bolster career opportunities and programs for students.
  • $120,000 will be used as flexible spending to adapt to shifts in workforce needs over the next four years.
  • $85,000 will be used to cover training programs for individuals and businesses. Programs include job sponsorships and training that will help individuals retain their current positions and better their performance.
  • $30,000 will be used to fill technology gaps for workers. The money will buy laptops and iPads for use at Warren County Career Center and Crandall Public Library, as well as televisions for classes and workshops, as well as new printers for the county career center.
  • $30,000 will be used to employ a job coach for the Warren County Summer Youth Employment Program, who will work with youth workers who need extra help.
  • $8,000 will be invested into workforce transportation services, including bus and bike passes distributed to businesses on the Greater Glens Falls Transit bus route, and near CDPHP Cycle! program bike hubs.

“The low unemployment rate of 3 percent does not reflect the short and long-term needs of our local business community and residents seeking meaningful opportunities and good-paying jobs,” said Warren County Employment & Training Director Liza Ochsendorf. “Most importantly, we need to retain the workers that we do have and engage young people with opportunities to learn about local industry jobs and build pathways for them to succeed in those jobs. The ARPA funding will provide more of those career exploration opportunities while also breaking down some barriers to employment such as training fees, transportation and technology needs.” 

The Warren County Board of Supervisors still has more to do in allocating the remainder of its $12.4 million in ARPA funding. The ARPA Advisory Committee’s next meeting is set for Wednesday, July 20, at 3 p.m. at Warren County Municipal Center.