Van Drew Measure Authorizing Aviation-Related Job Certification Programs At County Colleges, Vo-Tech Schools Clears Senate Education Panel

Measure Aimed at Boosting Cumberland County’s Aviation Industry, Aiding Local Job Seekers

TRENTON – Legislation sponsored by Senator Jeff Van Drew (D-Cape May/Cumberland/Atlantic) to allow county colleges and vocational school districts to establish aviation-related job training, certification and internship programs was unanimously approved today by the Senate Education Committee.

Under the bill (a substitute for S-536 and S-1720), county vocational school districts and county colleges will work to identify needed skills and certifications, develop training programs, train workers for jobs in the aviation industry, and provide student internship opportunities in the aviation industry in partnership with employers in that industry. Senator Van Drew noted that companies such as Boeing, which opened an aircraft modification facility at the Millville Municipal Airport last year, could benefit from the legislation.

�With major aviation operations located locally in Cumberland County, we have an opportunity to create partnerships between the industry and our educational facilities that will provide local companies with a well-trained workforce, while at the same time helping to get our residents back to work,� said Senator Van Drew. �This measure will also provide a financial incentive for companies that participate in these partnerships, making it an all-around win for our state.�

The bill establishes a program to provide tax credits to corporations which make contributions to establish aviation related job certification, training, and internship programs at county colleges and county vocational school districts. Under the program, a taxpayer will be allowed a credit equal to 100% of the contributions made during the privilege period to establish and support such programs during the privilege period.

�The unemployment rate in New Jersey remains above the national average, and unfortunately Cumberland County continues to have the highest unemployment rate in the state,� said Senator Van Drew. �By establishing aviation certification and training in our local colleges and vocational schools, we will help to provide new skills to our residents and create new opportunities for them to obtain good-paying local jobs.�

The committee approved the bill by a vote of 5-0. It now heads to the Senate Budget and Appropriations Committee for consideration.