Grant funds are available to employers in Union, Wallowa and Umatilla counties to provide a source of flexible funding for activities that address the needs of the region's changing workforce.

The Northeast Oregon Alliance Education and Training fund is designed to help employers and self-employed individuals reduce the cost of training for existing employees. funds may be requested in two areas: 1) to reimburse the cost of a specific training course (external or on-site) and/or affiliated training expenses (limited to transportation, lodging, and required course materials; and 2) to reimburse the cost to hire/back fill an employee's position while he/she attends training. Funds may not be requested for traditional on-the-job training activities.

Applications will be accepted on a first-come, first-served basis starting Jan. 15. Applications received before this date will be returned. The proposed education/training activities must be completed by May 31, 2004. Funds will be available on a reimbursement basis. All requests for funding must be approved prior to participation in the proposed training activity. The maximum amount available to a single employer or self employed individual is $5,000 with a maximum of $500 per employee.

Application materials and information are online at www.neoedd.org. To request an application by mail or for more information, contact the Northeast Oregon Economic Development District at 426-3598 or 800-645-9454.

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