Washington, D.C. (KIFI) – Idaho Congressman Mike Simpson has secured $100,000 in a recent government funding bill to strengthen workforce development programming at the College of Eastern Idaho (CEI) in Idaho Falls.
“As Idaho’s population continues to grow, the construction industry is growing with it,” Simpson said. “There are many good paying jobs in trades like plumbing, welding, and HVAC, but we need more talented employees who are trained to fill those positions and ready to succeed. I am proud to support CEI’s ‘Trade Up’ program which will expand virtual education in these important trades and grow Idaho’s trade pipeline.”
The funding, which was included in recent government funding legislation as Community Project Funding, will allow CEI to build out virtual trades education, equip five classrooms for live teaching broadcast, and help students earn stackable micro-credentials, the ability for students to re-skill to meet market needs, and assist with remediation support to pass certifying exams.
“The College of Eastern Idaho is grateful for Congressman Simpson’s support for our mission as a community college in eastern Idaho,” CEI President Rick Aman said. “This region is experiencing significant growth and the Community Project Funding will allow the College to train students to fill a number of skilled trades and high-tech positions. These are important family wage jobs which will support our growing economy. This training will use our facilities, increase the number of simulations and technical equipment, and allow for virtual training through online infrastructure.”
New in Fiscal Year 2022, Community Project Funding allows Members of Congress to submit worthy proposals from government agencies and non-profit organizations in their districts. To ensure transparency and accountability, the House Appropriations Committee established several new rules that every project submitted for funding must follow. For a request to be considered for funding in FY22, the following conditions were met:
- Members certified that they, their spouse, and their immediate family have no financial interest in the projects they requested.
- Members posted every CPF request online simultaneously with their submission to the Committee on Appropriations.
- Members provided evidence of community support that were compelling factors in their decision to select certain projects.
- Members were allowed a maximum of 10 CPF requests.
- No CPF grants were directed towards for-profit grantees.
- Total CPF spending was capped at 1 percent of discretionary spending.
“The reforms put in place by the Appropriations Committee ensured the necessary openness and transparency so that every taxpayer had a chance to review and comment on projects funded through this process,” Congressman Simpson said. “I am grateful for the opportunity to have a more direct role in supporting the communities in my district rather than leaving funding decisions up to bureaucrats in the Biden Administration or letting the funds go to another congressional district. The positive impact of these projects will be felt by community members across Southeast Idaho, and I look forward to watching them come to fruition.”