Upshur County Development Authority Director Jennifer Bostian

Upshur County Development Authority seeks grant to evaluate local workforce training assets

BUCKHANNON – The Upshur County Commission agreed to support a new multi-county workforce development system being developed by the Upshur County Development Authority.

Upshur County Development Authority director Jennifer Bostian attended the April 21 Upshur County Commission meeting, requesting the commissioner’s support.

“I’m here this morning to request a letter of support for the ARC — Appalachian Regional Commission — grant application that we’re putting in for a planning grant related to our workforce development system which will be across at least a four-county area,” Bostian told commissioners. “Upshur County is the lead, but we want to include Randolph, Lewis and Barbour.”

The program would evaluate each county’s workforce training assets.

“I’ve been contacting all of the area colleges and community colleges to get their inclusion as well, but it will focus on looking at our various regional assets to do workforce training,” Bostian said. “The industry needs training provider capacity. For instance, we only have a certain number of spots at Fred Eberle. What do we need to do to get more capacity?”

The grant would also allow the UCDA to evaluate existing skillsets to help plan for future economic development in the area.

“After we hopefully get this grant, we would go after an implementation type of grant,” Bostian said. “But I think it’s wise for us to just start by getting our facts and ducks in a row, so this letter would show your support for that.”

The commission agreed to support the grant application.

In other Upshur County Commission news:

  • The commission approved and signed the West Virginia SIEEP Grant Program Application for the 26th Judicial Circuit Community Corrections Program in the amount of $123,414. If awarded, the funds will be used to provide psychiatric evaluations and medical assessments.
  • The commission approved a request for employment of Derek Long as part-time Deputy DHSEM Director effective immediately. This position is not to exceed 520 hours per calendar year; however, weekly hours will vary significantly due to emergencies and training.
  • The commission approved Requests for Bids and Minimum Vehicle Specifications for one new half-ton truck for the Lewis-Upshur Community Corrections Program. Sealed proposals must be received no later than 4 p.m. on May 18, 2022 at the Administrative Annex located at 91 West Main Street, Suite 101. Proposals received by the deadline will be publicly opened, reviewed and read aloud by the commission at 9:15 a.m. on Thursday, May 19, 2022.

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