BennettComm4.27.15SPRINGFIELD- This year’s Skills Gap Report by projects that there will be an additional three and a half million manufacturing jobs by 2025

However, two million of them will go unfilled for lack of qualified candidates.

State Senator Scott Bennett (D-Champaign) passed Senate Bill 1393 to promote career and technical education to help alleviate workforce shortages in Illinois.

“After meeting with and touring local schools and manufacturing facilities, I know workers and businesses are ready to work.  The major factor missing in this equation is adequate training,” said Bennett.

SB 1393 requires the Illinois State Board of Education, Illinois Community College Board and the Illinois Department of Employment Security to work together to identify industries and occupations in Illinois that face workforce shortages or a lack of adequately trained, entry-level workers.

Based on their findings, grants of $1,000 will be awarded per pupil to school districts and community colleges for each student who successfully completes an industry-recognized certification program that was designed to mitigate workforce shortages.

“Our job is to ensure we are meeting the needs of current and future Illinois businesses. If we want to continue to grow as a state, we need to match employers with skilled workers,” said Bennett.

SB 1393 passed the Senate and now moves to the House for consideration.

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