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After East Spencer, commissioners look to other towns for job training program

By Josh Bergeron
josh.bergeron@salisburypost.com

SALISBURY — With approval from other county commissioners, Vice Chairman Jim Greene hopes to expand a job-training program into four new areas.

Greene has proposed bringing the N.C. Manufacturing Institute to Cleveland, China Grove, Rockwell and Salisbury’s West End community. A proposal included with Monday’s agenda says the jobs-training program would allow individuals to be certified and placed in other job markets in addition to the NC Manufacturing Institute.

After Tuscarora Yarns closed its China Grove facility earlier this year and paid back tax incentives it had received, county commissioners directed the money to the N.C. Manufacturing Institute. Meetings were scheduled in East Spencer for people interested in taking the classes. The goal of the interest sessions were to attract candidates to participate in job training courses.

In his proposal to county commissioners, Greene projects a budget of $100,000 for eight-week courses. The proposal includes a goal of up to 25 people from each enrollment opportunity.

The N.C. Manufacturing institute is funded, in part, by employers. Companies that hire a person trained by the N.C. Manufacturing Institute pay $1,000 into the program if the hired person stays with the company for a specified period of time.

Commissioners will consider Greene’s proposal on Monday during their 3 p.m. meeting, which will be held at the Rowan County Administration Building — 130 West Innes Street in Salisbury.

In other business from Monday’s agenda:

• County commissioners could give final approval to the site proposed for the Rowan-Salisbury School System’s consolidated, western elementary school.

The site is roughly 41 acres and includes the current grounds of Cleveland Elementary School. The Rowan-Salisbury school board unanimously voted to enter into a purchase agreement for the land on Sept. 12.

Commissioners have previously agreed to fund a western elementary school site. The only attachment included with Monday’s agenda is an environmental study, which has identified some potential issues. One includes the quality of soil on site. The other relates to underground storage tanks located on site.

During an October meeting of the Rowan-Salisbury school board, Assistant Superintendent Anthony Vann called the issues “fairly standard stuff.”

• Commissioners are scheduled to approve a grant worth $817,473 to rehabilitate the Rowan County Airport’s north apron.

• Commissioners will consider whether to appoint current school board candidate Andrew Poston to the Juvenile Crime Prevention Council.

• Commissioners will hold a closed session to consider an undisclosed personnel matter.

Contact reporter Josh Bergeron at 704-797-4246.

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