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U.S. Department of Commerce: American Rescue Plan Act, Good Jobs Challenge

Deadline: January 26, 2022

The Good Jobs Challenge is designed to help get Americans back to work by investing in (1) developing and strengthening regional workforce training systems that support sectoral partnerships, (2) designing sectoral partnerships, and (3) implementing sectoral partnerships that will lead to high-quality jobs. The goal of regional workforce training systems is to create and support effective training programs that will connect the in-demand and emerging skills needs of employers with qualified workers, and help workers find and keep quality jobs and advance along their chosen career path. Applicants are encouraged to reach historically underserved populations and areas, communities of color, women, and other groups facing labor market barriers such as persons with disabilities, disconnected youth, individuals in recovery, individuals with past criminal records, including justice-impacted and reentry participants, serving partners/trainee organizations participating in the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP), Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) and Women, Infants and Children (WIC), and veterans and military spouses.

These systems and partnerships will create and implement industry-led training programs, designed to provide skills for and connect unemployed or underemployed workers to existing and emerging job opportunities. Ultimately, these systems are designed to train workers with the skills to secure a union job or a quality job that provides good pay, benefits, and growth opportunities.

Proposals will be funded within the following three phases, as applicable to regional needs:
* System Development: Help establish and develop a regional workforce training system comprised of multiple sector partnerships.
* Program Design: Develop the skills training curriculum and materials, and secure the technical expertise needed to train workers.
* Program Implementation: Implement non-construction projects needed to provide workforce training and connect workers with quality jobs, including wrap-around services.

Amount: $500,000,000 is available to make up to 50 awards ranging from $1,000,000 – $25,000,000. Projects are expected to range from 24 to 36 months.

Eligibility: A System Lead Entity of a regional workforce system or a Backbone Organization of a sectoral partnership may be the lead applicant. These organizations may make subawards to other eligible recipients as necessary. Eligible applicants include a(n):
* District Organization of an EDA-designated Economic Development District
* Indian Tribe or a consortium of Indian Tribes
* State, county, city, or other political subdivision of a State, including a special purpose unit of a State or local government engaged in economic or infrastructure development activities, or a consortium of political subdivisions
* Institution of higher education or a consortium of institutions of higher education
* Public or private non-profit organization or association acting in cooperation with officials of a political subdivision of a State

Link: https://eda.gov/arpa/good-jobs-challenge/

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