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  • Jobs for Veterans’ State Grants

    (OMB Control Number: 1225-0086)

    The Jobs for Veterans’ State Grants (JVSG) are mandatory, formula-based staffing grants to States (including DC, PR, VI and Guam). The JVSG is funded annually in accordance with a funding formula defined in the statute (38 U.S.C. 4102A (c) (2) (B) and regulation and operates on a fiscal year (not program year) basis, however, performance metrics are collected and reported quarterly on a Program Year basis (as with the ETA-9002 Series). Currently, VETS JVSG operates on a multi-year grant approval cycle modified and funded annually.

    In accordance with 38 U.S.C. § 4102A(b)(5) and § 4102A(c), the Assistant Secretary for Veterans' Employment and Training (ASVET) makes grant funds available for use in each State to support Disabled Veterans' Outreach Program (DVOP) specialists and Local Veterans' Employment Representatives (LVER) staff. As a condition to receive funding, 38 U.S.C. § 4102A(c)(2) requires States to submit an application for a grant that contains a State Plan narrative, which includes:

a. How the State intends to provide employment, training and job placement services to veterans and eligible persons under the JVSG;

Current Narrative:

Projected Employment Outlook for Veterans

Alabama’s unemployment rate is 3.1 percent.  The unemployment rate for Veterans is 3.9 percent, or approximately 8,000 Veterans looking for work.  Forty percent of unemployed Veterans are over age 55.  The unemployment rate for Post 9/11 Veterans is 3.8 percent, but for the 45 percent of Post 9/11 Veterans who served in Iraq or/and Afghanistan the unemployment rate is higher at 5.7 percent.  Currently in Alabama there are more than 300 aerospace and defense companies with more than 61,000 employees and more than $8 billion in defense contracts.  Alabama continues to benefit from strong foreign investment, driven in part by significant economic incentives, including workforce job-driven training provided through the Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act (WIOA) Program, and Alabama Industrial Development and Training (AIDT), an independent agency under oversight by the Alabama Secretary of Commerce, which encourages manufacturers to establish operations in Alabama where they can grow and do what they do best – make products ranging from automobiles and engines to chemicals and carbon fibers, from water heaters and work gloves to vitamins and food products.

Current economic expansion in Alabama is not limited to a single industry or geographic location. Veterans in Alabama will continue to be advantaged by emerging jobs from major expansions. In the automotive sector, Hyundai has a $388 million technology upgrade in process at its Montgomery facility, and Mazda Toyota is locating a $1.6 billion manufacturing plant in Huntsville. A large auto supplier network has also sprung up in Alabama, such as South Korean international automotive supplier Daechang Seat Co., Ltd. USA. They are investing in a $9 million facility that is forecast to bring 100 jobs to Phenix City in the Spring of 2020. In Andalusia, Shaw Industries, a company which employs 1,000 in creating fibers used in carpet, is moving forward on a $250 million expansion which is set to be completed in 2020. In Mobile, French-owned Airbus employs 1,000 at its $600 million facility, producing 40 to 50 aircraft annually. They are in the process of adding a 2nd final assembly line and have launched 2 new hiring programs designed to train and employ those with little-to-no aviation experience. Also, in Mobile, the Australian shipbuilder Austal Ltd. expanded its workforce by 3,500 to build Littoral Combat Ships for the U.S. Navy, thus far having 12 ships either recently completed or still in production, with new contracts for at least 5 more. The Mobile area has also been bolstered by 2 significant additions: a $135 million, 2.6 million square feet Wal-Mart distribution center which employs 750 with an average starting wage of $16.50 per hour; and a new 362,000 square feet Amazon distribution center which employs 1,500 and offers a starting wage of $15.00 per hour.

1.         Alabama will continue with plans under the Accelerate Alabama initiative that will include the services provided by Alabama Career Centers affiliated with the American Job Center network to include Veterans and Eligible Persons with resources and emphasis for technical training and higher education.

2.          Increase business services outreach to Federal defense contractors and subcontractors, such as Austal Ltd. of Mobile for work on the Navy’s Littoral Combat Ship; Northrop Grumman of Huntsville for research and development services in support of integrated missile defense; Boeing Corporation for work on Army helicopters; L-3 Coleman Aerospace of Huntsville from the Missile Defense Agency.

3.         Expand the WIOA OJT and AIDT training and job opportunities listing on the Alabama’s automated data system to increase priority referral of Veterans and Eligible Persons to jobs and job training.

4.          Increase employer outreach in the automotive and aviation manufacturing sectors which employ many Recently Separated Veterans and pay the highest average wages of manufacturing industry in Alabama – nearly $75,000.00.

5.         Encourage more Veterans to enroll in the State’s workforce job-driven training, in trade, manufacturing, and shipbuilding apprenticeship programs offered through the Alabama Industrial Development Training (AIDT) to increase the entered employment rate of Recently Separated Veterans and long-term unemployed, older Veterans.

6.         Expand innovative partnerships such as the initiative of the Alabama Career Center in Mobile, American Job Center affiliate that is training Veterans in the welding training and certification program under a joint-venture by AIDT with the ship building industry. Historically, Veterans who complete training are placed in well-paying and stable jobs.

Employment Service Case Management by DVOP Specialists

Standard DVOP case management practices will include:

1.         Assisting Veteran-clients in development of job objectives and a resume.

2.         Identifying significant barriers to employment.

3.         Referring or assisting Veteran-clients to appropriate supportive services.

4.         Determining a Veteran-client’s economic need.

5.         Identifying training or educational goals.

6.         Documenting contact with employers on behalf of individual clients.

7.         Maintaining current contact information.

8.         Documenting job referrals.

DVOP specialists will use the state automated data system case management feature to load cases into “My Cases” portfolio. Case management review of the caseload for every DVOP specialist under the state automated data system “My Cases” feature will be conducted by Employment Service Managers on a monthly basis to ensure adherence to required practices and privacy concerns. Employment Service Managers will also review the “My Cases” portfolio of their DVOP specialists to identify effective performances (best practices and success stories) and shortcomings in services needing correction. DVOPs will use reports provided from the state automated data system to outreach and contact Recently Separated Veterans, ages 18 to 24, and Veterans receiving ex-service member Unemployment Benefits (UCX) for the purpose of offering job placement or job training services. Veterans responding to this outreach will be provided assessment services to determine their readiness to apply for employment opportunities in there are of choice with their current skills. Assessment will include evaluating the additional skills needed for employment with employers having those jobs. This approach provides Veterans with customer choice as to specific occupations for which to begin training. Veterans are also acquainted with the AJC resources that are available to pursue job-driven training in emerging industries, such as fast-growing jobs in Green industries.

Measuring Performance Outcomes

For comparison of performance to negotiated outcomes, state Individual Service Coordinators (ISC) will use automated reports prepared from the state automated system and the ETA-9173 reports from the U.S. Department of Labor. Additionally, AJC Managers will submit a Manager Quarterly Report on Services to Veterans in the format approved by the U.S. Department of Labor, Veterans Employment and Training Service. AJC Managers will also provide an assessment as to whether individualized services provided by DVOP specialists assigned to them are being correctly documented and effective.

Planned Deployment of Grant-Funded Staff

JVSG funds allocated to Alabama will support 21 Full-Time Equivalent (FTE) DVOP positions, 12 FTE LVER positions, and 3 Consolidated DVOP/LVER positions. All LVER, DVOP and Consolidated positions are state merit system employees.  LVERs, DVOPs and Consolidated positions will be assigned to Alabama Career Centers in the AJC network to ensure maximum effectiveness and complete integration of grant activities and services on behalf of Veterans. As described in Title 38 U.S.C. Chapter 41, LVERs and DVOPs have distinctly different roles and responsibilities in support of Priority of Service to Veterans and Eligible Persons in service delivery programs carried out by the AJCs.

The activities and functions of LVERs and DVOPs funded under the grant will be carried out in strict adherence to the Wagner-Peyser Act, as amended; the Workforce Innovation Opportunity Act, as amended; and Title 38 U.S.C., Chapters 41 and 42, as amended by the Jobs for Veterans Act (Public Law 107-288), and will be subject to the provisions of the grant and supplementary operating requirements that may be promulgated through Veterans Program Letters (VPLs), and related guidance from Veterans Employment and Training Service. All LVER and DVOP specialists as required by the Jobs for Veterans Act, as amended, will attend training at the National Veterans Training Institute (NVTI) within 18 months of their hire date. Applications for NVTI mandated training will be submitted by the AJC Manager to the State Director, Veterans Employment and Training Service (DVET), or designated NVTI coordinator, within one month of hire date. LVER and DVOP assignments are made in consultation with the DVET.

DVOPs are to be located in proximity to community organizations and other entities serving Veterans with significant barriers to employment, and where DVOP outreach is effective at locating Veterans with SBEs and other Eligible Persons in need of individualized services and case management, as prescribed in VPLs 03-14, 04-14, and 03-19, such as locations within the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs that provide medical and benefits services, other U.S. Department of Labor grant recipients offering services to homeless Veterans and Veterans who have been justice involved, with an emphasis on extending outreach to Veterans and Eligible Persons who are educationally and economically disadvantaged. DVOPs assigned to work for Managers of Alabama Career Centers in the AJC network will accept only Veteran-clients referred by Career Center Representatives and determined to have an SBE, as per the definition.