County Board Chairman Theodore Lipscomb, Sr.
Press Release

Supervisor Lipscomb Praises Passage of 2014 Ready-to-Work Investment

Legislation Provides $400,000 for Extension of “R2W” Program

By - Feb 7th, 2014 01:20 pm

Milwaukee County Supervisor Theodore Lipscomb, Sr. today said he was pleased that the County Board unanimously passed legislation that will authorize $400,000 from the Economic Development Fund to extend the “Ready to Work” (R2W) initiative, a program that creates job access by matching individuals with training and employers.

The first stage of the initiative placed 500 Milwaukee County residents in jobs following training into manufacturing and construction sector jobs at wages averaging $18 an hour. The program can be enhanced by state and federal funding to serve even more workers.

“This initiative has been very successful, and the County Executive now recognizes that,” Lipscomb said. “President Obama described the program to a tee in his State of the Union address. In fact, he used the very words ‘ready to work’ when he called for a national investment in well coordinated workforce development.”

“The results speak for themselves. The effectiveness of this investment is shown in the more than 500 people who have already benefited from this program and have been placed in jobs as a result of the training provided. This initiative is designed to help those who are ready to work to receive the training and placement they need to obtain family-supporting jobs.”

The 2014 R2W investment is funded by payments from the sale of land that is now Innovation (Research) Park in Wauwatosa.

When the first $1 million investment in R2W was proposed in 2011, by Lipscomb and former County Supervisor Eyon Biddle, Sr., it was vetoed by Abele and subsequently the County Board overrode that veto. The adopted resolution was a compromise proposal developed in cooperation with the Administration. County Executive Chris Abele, who has pledged to sign the resolution, now recognizes the success of the R2W initiative.

When reached for comment, Biddle added, “The results speak for themselves, residents are getting good jobs, and everyone from Abele to Obama can see the value of this investment. This investment and workforce development model is a great success and I am pleased that the Board unanimously agreed.”

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