Applications for stimulus-funded summer jobs flood into Salisbury agency

Published 12:00 am Tuesday, December 1, 2009

By Mark Wineka
The Salisbury-Rowan Community Action Agency has received about 275 applications for 68 summer jobs available in Rowan County thanks to federal stimulus money.
The SRCAA is the lead agency for $241,854 allocated to provide youth 14 to 24 years old job opportunities in Rowan County.
The money will offer eight to 10 weeks of summer employment at $7.25 an hour. Youth work 35 to 40 hours a week, which includes four work days and an additional day focused on “academic enrichment activities” and work-readiness skills.
Under the same program, Cabarrus County has received $200,666 for 58 summer jobs.
Salisbury Mayor Susan Kluttz called the stimulus money for the summer jobs “a dream come true for the community.”
Joanne Diggs, director of the Workforce Investment Act program for the SRCAA, described it as “a high-profile, high expectation” program and one of the largest summer employment opportunities for youth.
No more applications are being taken.
“I keep turning them down,” Diggs said Tuesday.
Job positions for 14- and 15-year-olds are limited, Diggs said.
The city of Salisbury is among the agencies providing jobs, but Diggs said she is still looking for more good job sites.
In another item related to stimulus money, the city of Salisbury is eligible for an extra $82,747 available through the Community Development Block Grant program.
Salisbury Senior Planner Janet Gapen said cities are being urged to use the extra money for infrastructure that promotes energy efficiency and conservation through rehabilitation and retrofitting of existing buildings.
She added that the emphasis was on job creation and retention in the short term and economic development in the long term.
At least 70 percent of the funds must be used to benefit low- to moderate-income families.
Salisbury City Council will consider a proposed budget for the extra funds at its June 2 meeting, and that plan must be submitted to the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development by June 5.