Date: Feb 12, 2013
Press Release Number: 21-2013
Agency working with unions, non-profits and others to create job opportunities
The Port Authority of New York and New Jersey Board of Commissioners has authorized the investment of $2.25 million during the next three years to support construction pre-apprenticeship training programs in both states.
The agency is working with unions, non-profit groups, and government agencies in both New York and New Jersey to fund programs that help high school students, vocational school students, minorities and women develop the skills they need to obtain entry-level employment opportunities that may lead to careers in the construction industry.
In New York, the Port Authority is extending its original three-year commitment to the Construction Skills program, administered by the Edward J. Malloy Initiative for Construction Skills Inc. This pre-apprenticeship training program reaches a diverse population of students from all five boroughs of New York City. The agency will continue to contribute up to $100,000 per year through February 2016.
In New Jersey, the Port Authority is extending its original three-year commitment to help fund the Construction Careers initiative. This pre-apprenticeship training program includes the Newark Construction Careers (NCC) and New Jersey Pathways (NJP) programs. Both provide students and adults from a six-county area (Passaic, Bergen, Union, Middlesex, Essex, and Irvington Township) with opportunities in skilled construction trades. The Port Authority will continue to contribute up to $100,000 per year for three years to the New Jersey Institute for Social Justice, which administers NCC; and up to $50,000 per year to the Construction Industry Advancement Program of New Jersey, which administers NJP.
The Board also approved a three-year agreement to provide funds for the Civil Construction Worker Training and Entrepreneurial Development Center, administered by the Urban League of Hudson County Inc. The program prepares Hudson County residents and small, minority, and women-owned businesses to compete for opportunities on regional and civil construction projects. The Port Authority will provide up to $500,000 per year through February 2016.
"This is a strategic investment in the future of our region," said Port Authority Chairman David Samson. "Our facilities require continuous maintenance and repair that can only be performed by highly skilled construction professionals. By investing in the next generation of construction trade experts, we ensure the region's ability to keep its vital transportation assets safe and in good repair, while the Port Authority helps to create job opportunities on both sides of the Hudson."
"These training programs have a remarkable record of success in preparing young people, minorities and women for careers in the construction trades and placing them in good-paying union jobs," said Port Authority Vice Chairman Scott Rechler. "Investment in these programs is an investment not only in our region's infrastructure but in economic development as well."
"The agency's participation in these programs is entirely consistent with our mission of maintaining the region's transportation infrastructure, supporting job creation, and driving economic development," said Pat Port Authority Executive Director Pat Foye. "These programs also open the door to job opportunities that in years past might have been closed to minorities and women. Increasing their participation in the construction industry benefits everyone."
"The maintenance of our transportation facilities in a state of good repair is inextricably linked to our economic development and job-creation goals," said Port Authority Deputy Executive Director Bill Baroni. "Without reliable, safe transportation infrastructure, business and the economy suffer and that leads to job losses. Our investment in these training programs helps address all three aspects of our mission and underscores our commitment to the people of our region."
Several unions have agreed to reserve a percentage of apprenticeship openings for program participants. Since 2001, almost 1,900 New York students have successfully completed the Construction Skills program, with almost 1,400 placed into apprenticeship programs affiliated with the Building and Construction Trades Council of Greater New York.
In New Jersey, approximately 1,375 participants have completed the NCC and NJP programs since 2001, with 837 successfully placed in union apprenticeship programs or related construction industry programs.
The Port Authority's participation in these programs helps increase the pool of minority and women apprentices that contractors may draw from to meet contractual workforce-diversity goals on agency projects, as well as expand the future availability of skilled construction workers in New York and New Jersey.
CONTACT: Port Authority of New York and New Jersey
Founded in 1921, the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey builds, operates, and maintains many of the most important transportation and trade infrastructure assets in the country. The agency's network of aviation, ground, rail, and seaport facilities is among the busiest in the country, supports more than 550,000 regional jobs, and generates more than $23 billion in annual wages and $80 billion in annual economic activity. The Port Authority also owns and manages the 16-acre World Trade Center site, where construction crews are building the iconic One World Trade Center, which is now the tallest skyscraper in New York. The Port Authority receives no tax revenue from either the state of New York or New Jersey or from the City of New York. The agency relies on revenues generated by facility users, tolls, fees and rents as well as loans, bond financing, and federal grants to fund its operations. For more information, please visit http://www.panynj.gov.