MADISON – Department of Workforce Development (DWD) Secretary Ray Allen today announced the July 1 opening of two ongoing Grant Program Announcements (GPAs) benefitting Small Business Occupations and All Sectors under Governor Walker’s Wisconsin Fast Forward (WFF) initiative. The GPAs will remain open throughout the fiscal year with grant award announcements to occur quarterly.
“Governor Walker’s Wisconsin Fast Forward grant program funds innovative training projects that provide businesses and their workers with the high demand skills needed to fuel growth and succeed in a global economy,” Secretary Allen said. “Thanks to critical feedback from grant applicants and other stakeholders, we are launching two ongoing grant opportunities to better address the immediate worker training needs of employers across the state.”
During the past four years, Governor Walker’s administration has invested over $200 million in state funds for workforce development, including $30 million in WFF grants to Wisconsin employers for customized skills training to fill current job openings and ongoing skill requirements. DWD has awarded over $20 million in WFF grant contracts to date under multiple rounds and GPAs, supporting more than 200 worker training projects that are benefitting hundreds of businesses and thousands of workers across the state. View grant contract summaries online.
The ongoing GPAs reflect recent program enhancements to better address the training needs of Wisconsin businesses from a variety of industries and sectors. The changes provide more flexibility for businesses that may have training needs during specific times of the year, and they support greater collaboration among employers to develop training projects in real time, rather than having wait for a grant cycle to open. The open GPA system takes effect July 1, 2017.
Wisconsin businesses and their workforce and economic development partners are encouraged to submit innovative, collaborative and customized WFF worker training grant proposals in accordance with application information. Details follow:
Worker Training Grants for Wisconsin Small Business Occupations
- Company size: 50 full-time employees or less
- Individual award amount: $5,000 to $50,000
- Match: $.50 for every grant $1 requested
Worker Training Grants for All Sectors in Wisconsin
- Company size: any
- Individual award amount: $5,000 to $400,000
- Match: $1 for every grant $1 requested
OSD will develop a weighted grant evaluation rubric to ensure that all reviewable grant proposals receive equal funding consideration.
The anticipated timeline for announcing grant awards follows:
||Intent to Award On or Before:
|January 1 – March 31
|April 1 – June 30
|July 1 – September 30
|October 1 – December 31
The WFF grant program is administered by DWD’s Office of Skills Development, which has development an effective process that enables businesses to easily apply for grants.