SACRAMENTO – The State of California’s Employment Training Panel announced that it approved a nearly $600,000 contract to the Butte-Glenn Community College District to train 608 workers through Butte College for hazardous debris cleanup and emergency response in the aftermath of the Camp Fire.
“With the massive efforts underway to clean up the debris and contamination from the Camp Fire, the Employment Training Panel is pleased to support the training and certification required of debris maintenance workers,” said Employment Training Panel Executive Director Stewart Knox. “More than 18,000 structures were burned and 50,000 residents were displaced by the wildfire, and this training can help workers secure jobs on current and future fire recovery projects.”
The Training Place, Butte College’s workforce development center in Chico, will provide Hazardous Waste Operations and Emergency Response (HAZWOPER) training and certification for cleanup and debris maintenance workers. Many of the cleanup sites require certified personnel to handle disposal of toxic materials. With nearly half of the workforce in Butte County affected by the Camp Fire, certified HAZWOPER companies will face a short supply of workers for the cleanup and recovery efforts. The Training Place plans to certify approximately 350 of the trainees in hazardous waste operations to address current workforce needs and long-term disaster recovery efforts.
“The partnership between the Employment Training Panel and Butte College, The Training Place will provide the ability to rapidly respond to the immediate Camp Fire recovery training needs,” said Annie Rafferty, Director of Butte College, The Training Place. “Clients shared the critical need to focus training on retaining key talent and upskilling employees to replace those who were forced to leave Butte County due to the loss of their homes. Local contractors expressed commitment to further develop the skills of newly certified HAZWOPER workers hired for the massive debris clean up and community rebuild effort. Together, Butte College and ETP will meet the recovery needs by providing advanced technical equipment training, new supervisor training and continuous improvement training. On behalf of our clients, Butte College, The Training Place appreciates ETP’s immediate support during this critical time.”
The Employment Training Panel is the state’s premier program supporting job creation and retention through training. The panel reimburses employers for the costs of training existing workers, funds training for unemployed workers to re-enter the workforce and helps to ensure California businesses have the skilled workers they need to remain competitive.
For more information about the program, please visit http://www.etp.ca.gov, or call (916) 327-5578.