Secrets of the Job Hunt


Thursday, June 10, 2010

Jobs in Oregon Created by Weatherization Grant

Many new jobs in Oregon will soon be created thanks to a federal grant for weatherization training.

The U.S. Department of Energy recently awarded $1 million in American Recovery and Reinvestment Act funding to the Oregon Energy Coordinators Association to establish a new training center for energy efficient retrofitting and weatherization services.

OECA is a nonprofit, professional organization that works to develop and provide better energy solutions for low-income households throughout Oregon. This new funding will address the need for more low-income weatherization workers, supervisors and inspectors, as well as help OECA develop a training program that will extend beyond low-income weatherization.

"This award will help to train Oregonians so that we can meet the workforce demands of the state's growing green energy industry," Gov. Ted Kulongoski said. "The work performed by these workers will increase energy efficiency and deliver long-term energy savings for Oregon homeowners."

Earlier this year, the Low-Income Weatherization Assistance Program received $38.5 million in ARRA funding, causing an increase in the demand for contractors to help Oregon families make their homes more energy efficient. That program is managed by Oregon Housing and Community Services through local community action agencies across the state.

"The opportunity to further develop and train Oregon's workforce to meet the demands of a growing field is an exciting opportunity," OHCS Deputy Director Rick Crager said. "We look forward to our continued partnership with USDOE and our state's community action agencies to deliver our low-income weatherization program and build the capacity in Oregon to meet energy retrofit needs of the future."

To date, the LIWAP has already weatherized 1,167 homes throughout Oregon. In addition, the program has employed a total of 561 employees and extended energy savings of at least 32,500 MBTUs.

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