Ontario Construction News staff writer
The Ontario government is contributing $592,000 to help train 150 people in Hamilton for jobs including environmental engineers, surveyors, civil engineers and general construction managers.
Also, funding is aimed at helping employers reduce obstacles to hiring, training and retaining workers and apprentices. This initiative is part of the 2021 Budget, Ontario’s Action Plan: Protecting People’s Health and Our Economy with funding being provided through the government’s $115 million Skills Development Fund.
“Our government launched the Skills Development Fund to generate innovative solutions to get Ontario back to work and ensure businesses have access to the qualified people they need to recover from the pandemic,” said Monte McNaughton, minister of labour, training and skills development.
“Through our new program in Hamilton, participants will learn world-leading best practices while gaining the critical skills and knowledge they need to fill in-demand jobs and support economic growth in the province.”
The Canadian Society for Civil Engineering is one of the first applications approved through the new fund to develop a sustainable infrastructure training program in partnership with McMaster University.
The Faculty of Engineering’s W Booth School of Engineering Practice and Technology, the Canadian Society for Civil Engineering will develop a Sustainable Infrastructure Training Program and certificate for future technologists and engineers in the construction sector to design, construct, operate, and maintain infrastructure that is sustainable and resilient to climate change.
The Hamilton-based training program will also drive economic growth by helping address an expected shortage of construction workers at a time when many key infrastructure projects are reaching their peak hiring periods.
“Too many of our neighbours lost their jobs since this pandemic began,” said Finance Minister Bethlenfalvy. “It simply is not fair. And these workers deserve our support getting back to work. For some, that may mean exploring opportunities in a new industry. But this often requires going back to school which costs money at a time when their personal finances may have already been stretched to the limit. To help workers with their training expenses, the government is proposing a new temporary Ontario Jobs Training Tax Credit for 2021.”
The government is working to process all applications for the Skills Development Fund and discuss proposals with funding candidates. More than 500 applications were received in the first month of the program and a second application round is being planned in spring 2021. More details will follow in the coming weeks.