More than 600 employers have used funding from the Next Level Jobs Employer Training Grant to train new or existing workers for jobs. This grant provides Indiana employers with reimbursement for approved training costs, up to $5,000 per employee and with a cap of $100,000 per employer. The Department of Workforce Development has obligated all of the funding currently available through the Employer Training Grant and will not be accepting any new applications.
For individuals wishing to take advantage of the Next Level Jobs Workforce Ready Grant program, including incumbent workers and new hires, please have them visit www.nextleveljobs.org
The EDC of Elkhart County offers training delivered by Purdue MEP, an approved training provider. Contact us today for your training needs: Cara@elkhartcountybiz.com
Elkhart, Ind.-based MITO Corporation, innovators in bringing mobile technology for comfort, convenience and safety to the RV, marine, automotive and bus industries, announced its collaboration with Elkhart Community Schools and the Center for Civic Innovation (CCI) Summer Internship Program at the University of Notre Dame, to outfit at least 25 buses with WiFiRanger Teton C-19 broadcast units and Core interior routers to provide internet access for several hundred students in the Elkhart area, according to a press release from the company.
Jason Inman, director of Technology Services for Elkhart Community Schools, who oversees the deployment of technology used within the school district, began working with the CCI interns to identify a solution for distance e-learning challenges Elkhart faced in the last few months of the previous school year due to COVID-19.
Four interns, representing Elkhart High School and Goshen College, worked on the project through CCI, including Irving Suarez, a senior psychology and biology double major at Goshen College. Jose Chiquito Galvan, CCI internship program manager for Elkhart, managed the team.
“Anecdotally, we knew there was a need (for affordable WiFI), and even more so now with the pandemic. But we didn’t know exactly where it was concentrated.” Galvan said. “The goal of the surveys was to get an understanding of the overall need for WiFi access.”
“Once we saw the results of the surveys, the primary goal was to provide reliable internet to students in South Central Elkhart,” said Suarez, who was born in Elkhart and grew up in Goshen.
Coincidentally it was their survey that ultimately led MITO Corporation to reach out with a solution that fit their mission.
“While we had been marketing our WiFiRanger C-19 bus product line since the start of the pandemic, it wasn’t until we received the intern’s demographic survey of Elkhart County that MITO learned of this initiative.” said Dan Maloney, president of MITO Corporation. “I approached MITO owner, Mike Stock who is an Elkhart high school graduate and he was 100% on board for doing whatever we could as a company to help our local community and his alma mater.”
The outdoor WiFi hotspots Elkhart Community Schools will be deploying through the CARES Act, will have an omnidirectional range of about 2,000 feet. Verizon will provide the internet service for the hotspots under a program that offers discounts to school corporations. MITO is offering its own discount on the broadcast hardware, which, according to Inman, is already more affordable and reliable than competing products that are being used elsewhere in the area.
The outreach by MITO was facilitated by Andrew Tate, owner of Three Fires Creative and the marketing representative for MITO Corporation.
“We immediately knew this would be a golden opportunity for MITO to do some goodwill in our own backyard in these uncertain times. We knew we had a hyper-competitive product that could translate the Notre Dame CCI interns’ hard work and study into a real-world solution.” Tate said. “It gives myself, and I’m sure, all other parties that came together, great satisfaction to help our community, but also by showing North Central Indiana entities can come together to solve major problems will reinforce the innovative strength and economic development of the Norther Indiana area as a whole.”
As reported yesterday by RVBusiness, U.S. Secretary of the Interior David Bernhardt was joined by U.S. Senator Todd Young and U.S. Congresswoman Jackie Walorski (IN-02) as they highlighted the importance of outdoor recreation and the resurgence of the American economy during a Wednesday (Aug. 19) visit to East To West RV, according to a release from the Interior Dept.
Following a tour of the facility’s manufacturing operations, Forest River Inc. and East To West RV signed President Trump’s Pledge to America’s Workers, committing to invest in their workforce and expand job opportunities in Indiana.
Since 2018, more than 440 companies have signed the Pledge to America’s Workers, committing to support more then 16.3 million job and training-related opportunities for American workers. More Americans are getting back to work as the economy continues to rebound and reopen. Over the past three months, 9.3 million jobs have been added.
“The Trump Administration is working to enhance the visitor experience on our public lands – places like the Indiana Dunes National Lakeshore and Patoka River National Wildlife Refuge – so more Hoosiers can enjoy recreating in the great outdoors,” said Secretary Bernhardt. “Many recreational visitors utilize RVs to experience national parks, refuges and campgrounds throughout the country. I applaud these business leaders’ commitment to support the Pledge to the America’s Workers and for providing great job opportunities in Elkhart, the RV capital of the world.”
“The Great American Outdoors Act will support tens of thousands of jobs in the state of Indiana,” Senator Young said. “Aside from National Parks themselves, no other industry will benefit as much from the GAOA as the RV industry. When parks are well-kept, when facilities are maintained and improved, and when conservation is prioritized, people naturally will want to visit these national treasures, many of which are right here in Indiana.”
“Manufacturers in Elkhart – the RV Capital of the World – know the importance of investing in the current and future American workforce,” said Congresswoman Jackie Walorski (IN-02). “Their commitment to building opportunities and creating jobs for hardworking Hoosiers will be key to our economic recovery. As we continue to rebuild our nation’s economy, the Great American Outdoors Act will improve access to our public lands and give Indiana’s outdoor recreation industry an added boost. I’m grateful for the leadership of President Trump and Secretary Bernhardt in protecting our national parks, defending the American worker and supporting Hoosier manufacturing.”
“Our country’s iconic national parks are one of the most favored destinations for RVers. We are grateful to the leadership of Secretary Bernhardt in ensuring these public lands receive the funding they deserve,” said RV Industry Association Vice President of Government Affairs Jay Landers. “We look forward to continuing to work with the Secretary and his team as they implement the Great American Outdoors Act to identify projects that will make the biggest impact to improve the access, safety, and enjoyment of RVers for generations to come.”
“East to West RV is excited to sign President Trump’s Pledge to America’s Workers as we are committed to hiring more great employees and helping them grow with our company,” said Lisa Rees Co-General Manager of East to West RV.
At East to West RV, Secretary Bernhardt discussed the Department of the Interior’s (Interior) role in facilitating outdoor recreation across the country, managing approximately 500 million acres of land, and how RVs help the public visit America’s national parks, wildlife refuges and other public lands.
More than 80 percent of RVs sold in the US are manufactured in Indiana with demand increasing throughout the United States amid COVID-19. In Elkhart County, the RV Industry has an annual economic impact of $14.5 billion and supports nearly 35,000 jobs, 178 businesses and pays $2.5 billion in wages.
Following the tour and signing at East to West RV, Secretary Bernhardt traveled to the Indiana Dunes National Lakeshore to meet with National Park Service employees and inspect facilities that have deferred maintenance needs. The Great American Outdoors Act, recently signed by President Trump, provides $1.9 billion a year for the next five years to address deferred maintenance needs at national parks, refuges, American Indian schools and other public lands throughout the country.
INDIANAPOLIS – Twenty Hoosier businesses have been awarded Manufacturing Readiness Grants from the Indiana Economic Development Corp. and Conexus Indiana. The nearly $2 million in funding comes from the Economic Activity Stabilization and Enhancement program designed to spur investments in manufacturing.
“The response we received from Indiana businesses to the Manufacturing Readiness Grant program was incredible, as manufacturers across the state have been enduring the pandemic and are moving forward with positive momentum despite shared challenges,” said Indiana Secretary of Commerce Jim Schellinger. “We couldn’t be more grateful to these companies for contributing to Indiana’s bright economic future.”
The grant recipients include:
A&T Concrete Supply Inc. – Gibson County; $2,000 to invest in a new, software-based production platform to increase workflow efficiency for its entire workforce.
Advanced Cabinet Systems – Grant County; $83,000 for equipment to modernize production.
Arroyo Industries LLC dba Direct Path Alliance – Marion County; $11,000 for 3D printing in order to streamline tooling and fixture development while reducing lead times.
Bed Techs Inc. – Dearborn County; $150,000 to develop an innovative antimicrobial copper coating that can be applied to surfaces for the health care industry and kills 99.9% of bacteria within two hours, while continuing to kill 99% of bacteria even after repeated contamination.
Beverly Industrial Service Inc. – Ripley County; $10,000 to update equipment to manufacture knives, spacers and tooling for the slitting industry, including aerospace, medical, textile and automotive.
C&R Advanced Cooling Technology – Marion County; $162,500 to expand into new markets including aerospace, defense and autonomous vehicles.
Custom Cut Decor LLC – Elkhart County; $37,500 to upgrade its production management software in order to streamline customer orders.
D.A.S. Services Inc. – Steuben County; $36,242 for new software to transform their in-plant and mobile business.
Indiana Face Mask – Jasper County; $161,769 for mask production machinery.
Indiana Furniture Industries Inc. – Dubois County; $90,879 for technology that will enable them to increase speed, reduce waste, enhance design capabilities and expand product offering within their seating operation.
Metro Plastics Technologies Inc. – Hamilton County; $125,000 for new, high-tech equipment to increase production speed.
Mursix Corporation – Delaware County; $116,837 for manufacturing face shields and components for respiratory-assist devices in response to the COVID-19 pandemic.
OMR Automotive – Marion County; $250,000 to invest and hire as it scales up to handle additional contact awards to double capacity and employment in the next 12 months.
Overton and Sons Tool & Die Company – Morgan County; $32,500 to invest in measurement technology to significantly improve production efficiencies.
PBTT – Warrick County; $189,180 to invest in advanced machining with COBOT automation to increase their capacity while hiring additional employees to manage these advancements in high-tech processing.
Pike Lumber Company – Fulton County; $95,320 for machining technology in order to upgrade one of its Indiana sawmills located in Akron.
Sugar Creek Bottling Company – Marion County; $109,144 for new machinery to bottle large-sized containers of hand sanitizer.
Tube Forming Systems – Johnson County; $93,250 for additive manufacturing to shorten development cycle times.
Universal Blower Pac Inc. – Hamilton County; $25,000 for high-tech equipment to improve production capabilities.
Wolf Corporation – Allen County; $155,980 for new machinery after retooling operations to produce hospital gowns for frontline health care workers during the COVID-19 pandemic.
The IEDC says the program has $4 million available in matching grants up to or equal to the amount of qualified investment in new equipment and machinery.
More applications are under review, even though Conexus says the allocated program funding would be exceeded if any more are accepted, the peer review panel will continue to make recommendations to the IEDC.
Utilimaster, a go-to-market brand of The Shyft Group’s Fleet Vehicles & Services business unit (NASDAQ: SHYF), a North American leader in specialty vehicle manufacturing, assembly and upfit for the commercial, retail, and service specialty vehicle markets, is hosting its third drive-thru job fair of the summer from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. on Aug. 5 at 603 Earthway Blvd., in Bristol, Ind., in response to COVID-19 health concerns.
Utilimaster is seeking to fill additional positions on its Bristol campus to meet increasing product demand from customers. In an extended effort to follow social distancing protocols, and for the comfort of applicants, interviews will be offered in both car-side and open-air sit-down formats, where masks will be required.
“We continue to experience growing demand for last mile delivery fleet vehicles, as more and more consumers are shopping online simultaneously increase the delivery of both essential and non-essential goods, direct to their doorstep,” said Chad Heminover, president, Shyft Fleet Vehicles & Services. “As a result, we’re looking for even more new team members to join us in Bristol and help us build the vehicles and upfits our customers need.”
Offering highly competitive wages, positions for hire include full-time, day and night shift general assembly positions with day wages starting at $15.50 an hour and night shift positions starting at $17.25 an hour. Both shifts include full benefits that will commence on the first day of work, which include tuition reimbursement, 80 hours of holiday pay, as well as traditional medical and wellness benefits.
This is the third drive-thru hiring event to take place across The Shyft Group corporation in the last month in support of continuing demand for its vehicles. This past June, the company — formerly known as Spartan Motors, Inc. — rebranded to The Shyft Group, to be more reflective of its next phase of business transformation and focus on high-growth commercial, retail, and service specialty vehicle markets, following the divestiture of its fire truck business. The name represents speed, efficiency, agility, and a high-intensity approach.
U.S. Rep. Jackie Walorski (R-Ind.) introduced legislation July 23 to double the R&D tax credit and allow more small business startups to access the credit, according to a release.
“America’s recovery from the unprecedented crisis we are facing will be driven by our innovative and entrepreneurial spirit,” Congresswoman Walorski said. “Doubling the R&D tax credit will encourage companies – especially small businesses and startups – to invest more in research and development that will unleash economic growth and prosperity. This commonsense measure will go a long way toward keeping America ahead of our global competitors and ensuring we continue to lead the world in scientific discoveries, technological breakthroughs, and cutting-edge manufacturing.”
The bill would double the rate for each of the options businesses have to access the research and development (R&D) tax credit.
Double the “Traditional” Credit to 40 Percent: For more established companies, the existing traditional credit rate – which uses a complicated formula – would double from 20 percent to 40 percent of the increase in R&D spending.
Double the Alternative Simplified Credit (ASC) to 28 Percent: The existing ASC rate – which uses a simpler formula – would double from 14 percent to 28 percent of the increase in R&D spending.
More than Double the Credit for Firms with Little Research History to 14 Percent: For companies with no history of U.S. research in the past three years, the credit would more than double from 6 percent to 14 percent of R&D spending. (The current rate would have been 7 percent if not for a prior drafting error.)
Double the Startup Limit to $500,000: Companies with relatively low income in the past five years can take one of the above credits as a credit against Social Security payroll taxes. The limit on the amount they may claim would double from $250,000 to $500,000.
This proposal is supported by the National Association of Manufacturers.
The full text of the legislation can be found here.
The new initiatives were launched to help Indiana businesses restart, adapt and stimulate long-term growth, especially small businesses and manufacturers.
June 1, 2020
Indiana is launching several new economic recovery initiatives designed to bolster critical relief efforts while encouraging long-term planning and investments to stimulate the state’s economy well into the future. Through these initiatives, the state will allocate nearly $44 million to provide support and resources including approximately $37 million in direct funding through grants and investments to small businesses and manufacturers – two key drivers of the Hoosier economy.
“To restart Indiana’s economic engine, it’s critical that we provide Hoosier businesses and entrepreneurs with the support they need to grow and get back on track,” said Governor Eric J. Holcomb. “These initiatives will ensure that two critical drivers of our state’s economy have access to resources and technological tools that allow them to continue competing and leading in the 21st century economy, while further positioning our state for long-term economic growth.”
To safely guide a return to economic activity, the state will deploy federal relief funds under the CARES Act in coordination with Indiana’s Economic Relief and Recovery Team, while targeting initiatives aimed at achieving long-term economic stabilization.
Small Business Restart Fund: Gov. Holcomb approved $30 million in federal funding made available through the CARES Act to small business restart grants, helping accelerate the speed of economic recovery activity by providing working capital to cover certain expenses related to the global pandemic. Indiana small businesses with fewer than 50 employees and $5 million in annual revenue that have experienced a 40% drop in revenue will be eligible to be reimbursed for up to 80% of qualified expenses, such as rent or mortgage payments, utilities, lease payments for real or personal property, and safety investments, such as personal protective equipment (PPE) and infrastructure improvements.
Eligible small businesses that demonstrate a revenue loss of at least 40% will be awarded up to $2,500 for each month while small businesses that demonstrate a revenue loss of at least 80% will be awarded up to $5,000 for each month, with grants issued up to $10,000 per company. Of the $30 million allocated to the fund, at least $5 million will be reserved for certified minority- and women-owned businesses.
Small Business Relief & Planning Resources: The Indiana Small Business Development Center (Indiana SBDC) received nearly $3.7 million from the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) through the CARES Act to support increased resources for entrepreneurs and small businesses over the next 18 months. The funding, which will nearly double the organization’s annual federal appropriations, will enable Indiana SBDC to increase no-cost services, such as counseling and training, for businesses that were in operation prior to and that have been impacted by COVID-19. Services will be available through the Indiana SBDC’s 10 regional offices across the state and are expected to focus on financial assistance, e-commerce, business adaptation and innovation, disaster resiliency and planning, and reopening plans.
Manufacturing Support & Long-Term Growth: The Indiana Economic Development Corporation (IEDC) board of directors approved $10 million to launch the Economic Activity Stabilization and Enhancement (EASE) program aimed at supporting technology and operational advancements in the manufacturing industry, which has long been a key driver of the state’s economy. EASE, which encompasses three complimentary initiatives, is designed to stimulate manufacturing investments that will position Indiana operations, and the sector overall, for future growth and prosperity by prioritizing startup investment and resources, technology modernization and development, and training assistance.
The three EASE initiatives include:
The new Smart & Advanced Manufacturing (SAM) Focus Fund, which will make seed and early-stage investments and provide entrepreneurship resources to Indiana manufacturing-focused startups through Elevate Ventures, the state’s venture development partner;
Manufacturing Readiness Grants, administered in partnership with Conexus Indiana, will provide matching grants of up to $200,000 to companies committing to modernizing their operations or integrating smart technologies and processes in order to improve capacity, or to companies investing in health care manufacturing technology, providing financial assistance to manufacturers supporting critical COVID-19 response efforts; and
A planned Smart Manufacturing Studio Lab, which will provide lab space and access to state-of-the-art smart manufacturing equipment, enabling businesses to train employees, validate technologies for their business models, and conduct third-party pilot manufacturing.
Of these programs, the SAM Focus Fund will launch immediately while the Manufacturing Readiness Grant applications are expected to be available in July with initial grant recommendations beginning in August. The IEDC will partner with industry stakeholders to develop a project scope for the Smart Manufacturing Studio Lab, mapping out next steps and a plan to source and supply the equipment, working toward a studio launch in early 2021.
Indiana’s manufacturing and small business sectors play critical roles in supporting the state’s economy. With more than 8,500 manufacturing facilities and the highest concentration of manufacturing jobs in the U.S., manufacturing accounts for 27.8% of Indiana’s total economic output. Additionally, according to the SBA, Indiana is home to approximately 104,335 small businesses that employ fewer than 150 associates, supporting 941,578 workers across the state.
Employers with an approved internship may receive state matching funds by hiring students, eligible to receive state financial aid, for a resume-building, experiential, paid internship. CHE is partnering with Indiana INTERNnet to better match students and employers to maximize each student’s academic success and career achievement and to assist employers in finding the perfect fit for their team.