Kuglitsch, Honadel Usher ‘Wisconsin Wins’ Program
Legislation will retrain citizens, help match citizens with employers
Madison— Yesterday, State Representative Mike Kuglitsch (R-New Berlin) teamed up with Representative Mark Honadel (R-South Milwaukee) and State Senator Van Wanggaard (R-Racine), to introduce legislation that will connect unemployed citizens with employers across the state with a new program called “Wisconsin Wins.”
“Our unemployment numbers are unacceptable here in Wisconsin and we are currently in the hole $1.2 billion to the federal government,” said Kuglitsch. “We need to be open to different ways to lower our unemployment numbers and I believe this new program is a great tool that we must use.”
The program consists of occupational training between Wisconsin employers and unemployment insurance claimants. Participants with the new program will train 20-24 hours per week, for up to six weeks with prospective employers. The main goal of this legislation is to place unemployed citizens with prospective employers for job training which will turn into full time employment when the program is complete
“I believe this is a great way to not only lower our state unemployment numbers, but to also close that gap in our states unemployment insurance fund,” said Kuglitsch. “Our sluggish national economy must be addressed and the growing number of UI beneficiaries is never a good thing. The “Wisconsin Wins” program will get our private sector moving again by providing incentives to employers and those seeking alike.”
There are requirements for both those seeking employment as well as employers. Those employers who wish to employ a part-time trainee must affirm that it currently has full-time employment available for the trainees when the program is complete.
Job Seeking participants would be eligible to participate in the program during the first 26 weeks of the claimant’s unemployment benefit year, must maintain eligibility for UI benefits throughout the program and claimants may only participate in the program twice in a calendar year. Also, the participants in the new program will continue to receive their UI benefits throughout the six week program and will also receive a $75 stipend from the Department of Workforce Development each week of their training.
The program is modeled after similar unemployment programs in Georgia and New Hampshire. These programs were seen as successful from job seekers as well as employers in their respective states by connecting the unemployed with employers and saving the state millions in UI funds.
“I am eager to get this process started in Wisconsin,” said Kuglitsch. “Here is a real opportunity to put Wisconsinites back to work, give employers a real chance to train potential employees, and save the state millions of dollars in the long run. This is not a time for partisan politics, if it works in other states why not bring it to Wisconsin at a time when we need reforms more than ever?”
The bill will be introduced in the near future after Senate and Assembly offices have had time to review for co-sponsorship.