Gov. Dannel Malloy visited New Britain Wednesday stopping at the corner of Chestnut and Main St. to talk with Iron Workers Local 15 who are constructing the new police station.
He spoke with about a dozen workers concerning what they did and how they were trained through the Jobs Funnel Program.
Angel Caban of East Hartford said the program was going good and Malloy responded that, “we need to put more people to work.”
The launch of the Jobs Funnel Program in New Britain took place in December by Mayor Timothy Stewart. This initiative is modeled after a Jobs Funnel Program in Hartford that has trained over 2,000 trade workers in ten years. Its purpose is to recruit training candidates in and around New Britain using Capitol Workforce Partners.
“The Jobs Funnel is a mechanism by which we can take untrained workforce and train them in a skilled trades and put them to work on public projects,” said Stewart. “It’s worked out really well here.”
Malloy, Stewart and various dignitaries were among those who were on hand to sign the last beam of the police station which was placed shortly afterwards.
“Due to the hard work of Mayor Stewart that is why you are here,” Ed Riley, business manager with Iron Workers Local 15, told iron workers. “Now with the continued support of the governor’s office, having a pro-union governor who understands what working families need in the state of Connecticut and a have policy of talking with us, we will see more opportunities.”
“On the job front and in the construction trade we have been in the doldrums a long time,” said Malloy. “The state is investing money in important projects – bioscience/UConn – will not only include hundreds of millions of dollars in construction, but will also add to job growth in a long term basis.”
Malloy also announced that Jobs Funnel will help work on the busway in New Britain.
“We’re spending wisely on projects that are going to produce jobs,” said Malloy. “That is what we need to do to get our economy going.”
He said Jobs Funnel is an important program.
“We’ve got to be reaching out to many of the folks who live in urban areas that have sometimes been overlooked for jobs in the construction trade,” Malloy said. “This is a great program that does it for us.”
“Certainly the construction industry is on its way back,” said Tom Phillips CEO of Capitol Workforce Partners. “There are some good things that are happening and we are projecting close to $4 billion in activity in this region alone.”
“I also want to thank Downes Construction because they are the project managers and did all the pre-job meetings and making sure the man power and workers were in place,” said Yolanda Rivera, program manager for Capitol Workforce Partners. “Without them things would not have happened.”
“Iron workers Local 15 provides some of the educational opportunities with our apprentice training instructors,” said Riley. “We have been involved since the inception of the Jobs Funnel. It’s been very, very beneficial.”
State Senator Terry Gerratana said, “the Jobs Funnel program is the best of both worlds. It is on the job training and leads to permanent jobs here in a variety of areas. This is skilled labors at its best.”
Stewart was happy with the words from the governor, “today, what you are hearing is the governor is committed to expanding that into other projects in the area that means the busway. When that starts this summer, we will extend the construction trades into that project.”