Tuesday, January 31, 2023

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Videos show disparities in Cleveland police response to kids in crisis, Pennsylvania receives federal funds to plug abandoned wells, and grants support 2020 fire recovery for Oregonians.

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President Biden says he will meet with members of the Congressional Black Caucus on much-needed police and justice system reforms, unresolved legal challenges regarding gerrymandering could have implications for 2024 congressional elections, and a government watchdog reveals fraud and waste tied to pandemic relief aid programs.

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"Brain Gain?" Research shows rural population is actually growing, especially in recreational areas; other small towns are having success offering relocation incentives like free building lots, cash, complimentary dinners and even internet credits; and researchers say the key is flexibility and creativity.

New $5.8M Grant Will Train Technicians to Build Out CA Broadband

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Thursday, September 22, 2022   

California is going to need tens of thousands of workers over the next six years as we continue to build the broadband network to bring high-speed internet to underserved areas.

Now, the feds have awarded $5.8 million to the Communications Workers of America to supercharge its workforce training program.

Frank Arce, vice president of Communications Workers of America District 9, which encompasses California, Nevada, Hawaii and Guam, said the union is partnering with the Chabot-Las Positas Community College District in the Bay Area to expand its apprenticeship program.

"We're planning on focusing on underserved communities," Arce explained. "Really making sure it's a locally based workforce, people of color, women, veterans, and young people."

The plan is to open three more paid apprenticeship training programs over the next few years in the Fresno, Chico and Los Angeles areas. The state is set to allocate more than $5 billion to extend high speed internet in rural areas, and the Infrastructure Act will send hundreds of millions in federal funds to bolster the effort.

Arce pointed out the grant also will allow the union to partner with employers to bolster working families.

"It's a great opportunity for people to get some skills and set themselves into a solid middle-class job," Arce asserted. "We're taking advantage of this opportunity that we're building our infrastructure in the country to see if we can get some Californians out to work."

Arce noted in the past, unscrupulous subcontractors working for telecom companies have cut corners and treated workers poorly. But he added the publicly-funded program will raise the standards to require high-quality materials, workmanship and employee benefits.


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