a. Project need
“Colorado’s unemployment rate hit 5.7 percent in January,
climbing past the national jobless rate for the first time in a decade.”
Job losses top U.S. rate; Colorado unemployment figures reflect wounds of tech,
telecom collapse The Denver Post, March 7, 2002.
The State of Colorado is requesting National Emergency Grant (NEG) funding for its workers
dislocated as a result of the September 11, 2001, terrorist attacks on America. The fallout of
these tragic events has had a devastating impact on Colorado’s workforce – as of March 2002,
one of the most devastating impacts in the nation.
Prior to September 11, Colorado was a state equated with opportunity and allure. A young, well-
educated population—Colorado has one of the highest percentages of college graduates in the
country—combined with beautiful scenery, open space and affordability made Colorado
attractive to companies looking to start up or relocate. As a result, throughout the 1990s,
Colorado experienced an enormous growth in population and new jobs. By 2000, Colorado had
the sixth busiest airport in the world, was the third most desirable place to visit in the U.S. (with
more than 25 million overnight travelers annually) and ranked fourth in the nation in receiving
venture capital funding for its businesses. Colorado became the home of several telecom
companies such as AT & T Broadband/Liberty Media Group, Qwest and Time-Warner
Telecommunications, as well as financial-services companies such as Charles Schwab and Janus
Funds. By May 2001, Colorado recorded an unemployment rate of 2.2 percent—the lowest state
rate ever —with the economy closely tied to the success of the tourism, technology, financial
services and telecommunications industries.
The terrorist attacks on September 11 have had a cataclysmic effect–shaking the diverse
industries that are the foundation of Colorado’s economy. On September 20, United Airlines
Colorado’ s Proposal for a National Emergency Grant, 1
budget cuts resulted in nearly 2,000 workers in Denver and Colorado Springs losing their jobs.
Denver International Airport experienced four straight months of traffic decline, and skier visits
fell 14 percent in November, December and January of the 2001-2002 ski season. The Denver-
metro area ranked 22nd among 315 cities in the number of jobs lost as a result of the September
attacks, according to the Milken Institute, a Los Angeles-based think tank. 1 Boulder-Longmont,
Colorado Springs, Fort Collins- Loveland, Grand Junction, Greeley and Pueblo all ranked in the
top 300 metro areas in the number of jobs lost as a result of the attacks.
High-technology companies, a significant employer of high-wage earners in the state, have laid
off over 2,500 workers since October. This compares to 252 layoffs during the same time period
in 2000. Financial-services companies, another industry of high- wage earners, have laid off
over 1,700 workers since September 2001. This compares to no layoffs in the same time period
of the year 2000. Telecommunications companies, with many product lines designed to serve
the high-tech and financial industries, have laid off over 2,000 workers since September 11.
Although there was some evidence of a slowing economy in early 2001, the events of September
11 devastated many businesses that had optimistically expected to ride through a slightly down-
turned economy. ―September 11 rocked us emotionally and economically,‖ according to the
South Metro Denver Chamber of Commerce’s economist. 2 In addition to the major Colorado
industries directly hit by September 11, Colorado is experiencing the resulting effects that the
downturn in these sectors are having on the rest of the state’s workforce. Hotels, restaurants,
construction companies and many small industries that had developed to support the larger
industries and their high-wage employees are now finding that the demand for their services
has dried up.
The result is that in a very short period of time, Colorado has gone from a state envied for its
job growth and low unemployment rate, to a state with job losses with some of the highest
1.8 million jobs to vanish post-Sept 11, The Denver Post, January 11, 2002.
2001: The year the bubble burst. Denver Business Journal online, December 21, 2001.
Colorado’ s Proposal for a National Emergency Grant, 2
rates in the nation. Unemployment rates skyrocketed to 5.2 percent in December 2001,
compared to just 2.5 percent one year earlier. This increase in the unemployment rate was second
in the nation only to Oregon, according to recently released employment statistics. 3 Between
September 2001, and December 2001, the unemployment rate increased by over one-half
percentage point each month, making Colorado one of only nine states in the country to have
experienced this level of unemployment growth (Federal Burea u of Labor Statistics). January
2002 unemployment rates jumped another half point to 5.7 percent. Some 95,000 Coloradans are
currently receiving unemployment, an 80% increase from this time last year. Weekly
unemployment claims have climbed from 2,400 in August 2001, to nearly 5,000 in November
―We’ve had a huge increase in claims. When the airlines started having their problems and
people stopped flying, conventions and meetings were cancelled. Unemployment claims just
snowballed on us,‖ according to the Director of Unemployment Insurance at the Colorado
Department of Labor. 4
Colorado’s prosperity up until 2001 led to an increase in the cost of living that now makes it
doubly difficult to absorb the impact of the unemployment rates. A self-sufficiency report
prepared for the Colorado Fiscal Policy Institute in August 2001 indicated that the self-
sufficiency standard for a single adult in Denver was higher than cities such as Los Angeles,
Houston and Philadelphia. 5 Economists predict things will get worse before they get better. Data
indicates this is not a shallow recession, according to Denver economist Patty Silverstein who
recently stated, ―I think we’re in for a rough one.‖ 6
Richard Wobbekind, an economist with the University of Colorado at Boulder, believes one
factor contributing to the dramatic rise in Colorado’s jobless rate is fallout from the terrorist
U.S. Depart ment of Labor on January 18, 2002.
Unemployment benefits going fast, Denver Business Journal, February 22-28, 2002.
Deana Pearce, Ph.D. The sel f-su fficiency standard for Colorado: a family needs budget, Colorado Fiscal Policy
Institute, August 2001.
State’s jobless soars, Denver Rocky Mountain News, 1/19/02.
Colorado’ s Proposal for a National Emergency Grant, 3
attacks in September and the associated job losses. People out of work aren’t counted in the
unemployment rate until they apply for unemployment benefits, which can happen months after
being laid off when their severance money has run dry, according to Mr. Wobbekind. 7
Because the impact of the September 11 th attacks has now reached all sectors of Colorado’s
economy, dislocated workers are having a difficult time reentering the workforce. Recent data
from the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities, reported in the Denver Business Journal, 8 shows
that ―Colorado is one of seven states where the number of workers using all their unemployment
insurance more than doubled from the fourth quarter of 2000 to the same period last year.
Colorado saw a 126 percent jump from 4,871 people to 10,996.‖
Colorado’s challenge is threefold:
First, overall unemployment has doubled demand for services when compared to the
services requested in 2000. The number of dislocated workers enrolled in training has
increased by 100% when compared to the number enrolled in the last quarter of 2000.
Second, One-Stop Centers have to readjust their services to handle the sudde n increase in
the number of highly educated, high-wage earners who must transfer their current skills
into other industries in which job growth is positive. The state’s current Workforce
Investment Act (WIA) dislocated-worker dollars have been obligated. Like many states,
because of flat- lined or reduced federal dollars, Colorado has had to supplement its One-
Stop system – both the unemployment insurance and WIA systems. However, because of
state fiscal concerns, these separate state funds may no longer be available to supplement
the One-Stop system. Consequently, the One-Stop Centers will be unable to provide the
necessary training and services that will lead to reemployment for these individuals (A
summary of available funds is found in the Attachments).
Third, because the economic effects of September 11 are rippling through the diverse
industries that make up Colorado’s economy, Colorado’s workforce development system,
Job losses top U.S. rate, The Denver Post, 3/7/02.
Unemployment benefits going fast, Denver Business Journal, February 22-28, 2002.
Colorado’ s Proposal for a National Emergency Grant, 4
which is comprised of nine locally-controlled Workforce Regions providing direct
services through 48 One-Stop Centers throughout the state, needs the ability to respond
flexibly and nimbly to the widely varying needs of diverse dislocated workers in different
industries across the state.
b. Analysis of target group
(1) Statewide overview
Colorado is a study in contrasts. Although it is a very rural state, with 31 of its 63 counties
classified as ―frontier,‖ 85% of the state’s population lives in the metropolitan areas along the
Front Range. Colorado’s eastern plains of farmland and grass prairie merge into the more
densely populated Front Range metropolitan area along the base of the Rocky Mountains.
The landscape of Colorado’s economy is as diverse as its geography. Unlike states whose
economies revolve around a single industry, Colorado’s economy relies on several key
industries: airline, tourism, high-tech, telecommunications and financial services. The
September 11 attacks hit these very industries hardest. An analysis of WARN notices, mass lay-
off data and public announcements (see ―Colorado layoffs‖ table in Section 2) clearly
demonstrates that these key industries have experienced significant layoffs since September 11.
The events of September 11th have also had a ripple effect on many other sectors, such as
retail and manufacturing, and have impacted all of Colorado, not just isolated geographic
regions. With downturns in the financial-services industry affecting manufacturing and other
industries that are dispersed throughout the state, only now is the state fully experiencing the
ramifications of this ripple effect. The current impact is illustrated by the following Colorado
The number of mass layoffs post September 11 increased by 62%, from a total of 4,712
people laid off during the third quarter to a total of 7,652 people laid off during the fourth
Colorado’ s Proposal for a National Emergency Grant, 5
The number of new applicants for unemployment insurance doubled from 27,852 to
53,032 when compared to the same time frame from the previous year.
The number of dislocated workers enrolled for job training services has increased by
more than 100% from 931 participants enrolled in the last quarter (October through
December) of 2000 compared to 1,936 enrolled in the last quarter of 2001.
Many of these newly dislocated workers are higher-wage earners and represent a significant shift
in the population, which traditionally seeks out workforce development center services. One-
Stop Centers have not only had to deal with the overwhelming demand on their services, but
many are also facing the challenge of how best to get high-wage earners into fast-track
employment. For many of these workers, the employment options in their previous industries no
longer exist, or there are fewer of these, and the challenge now is how to transfer their skills into
demand occupations at their same earning level. Most importantly, it is critical to keep this
workforce in Colorado: Taxes derived from these employees make up a significant share of
Colorado’s tax revenues.
The table below illustrates the demographic characteristics of dis located workers statewide.
Statewide WIA Characte ristics for Dislocated Workers
September 2001-December 2001
Worker Characteristics Registration*
Colorado’ s Proposal for a National Emergency Grant, 6
Age 19-21 1%
Age 22-29 9%
Age 30-44 42%
Age 45-54 35%
Age 55 and over 13%
Education–11th grade & below 6%
High school diploma or equiv. 39%
Post high school 29%
College graduate 26%
American Indian 1%
Hawaiian Native /Pacific 0%
Multiple Race 1%
Eligible UI Claimant 69%
*Percent registered and enrolled in services.
(2) Synopsis of layoffs in Colorado’s key industries
Telecommunications and technology. Colorado’s largest industry, this sector has accounted for
eight percent of the state’s economy. Ten percent of Colorado’s private sector employees worked
for high-tech companies, the highest percentage in the nation. In 2000, the Technology Center
alone, located at the southern edge of Denver, housed more than 6,000 businesses and 120,000
employees, generating nearly a quarter of Colorado’s sales tax revenue. Since September, over
4,300 employees in these industries have been laid off compared to 552 layoffs during the same
time period of the previous year.
Colorado’ s Proposal for a National Emergency Grant, 7
Airlines/Aviation. Denver International Airport is a major hub for United Airlines and the sixth
busiest airport in the world. Passenger traffic at Denver International Airport fell by nearly a
third in September to 1.98 million passengers, down from 2.96 million passengers in September
2000. Air traffic declined 20% in December, according to airport officials. Total airline/aviation
layoffs since September 2001 have been nearly 3,000 workers.
Touris m. Tourism is the second largest industry in Colorado. Twenty-six ski areas attract 11
million visitors each year. Skier visits are down 14% compared to last year. In October, metro-
area hotel occupancy dropped nearly 20% compared to the same month in 2000. 9 Twenty percent
of tourism-related businesses have said they have seriously considered going out of business
since September 11, according to a Colorado Tourism Office survey conducted in October 2001.
Financial sector. The financial sector, which had become one of the state’s dominant industries
in the past decade, has cut over 1,800 positions since September 11. This compares to no layoffs
during the same time period of the previous year (using mass layoff and WARN notice data).
Layoffs from these industries have had an impact on other sectors of the workforce. For
example, the telecommunications industry itself has segmented into many different specialized
sectors, such as service providers, cabling and installation, parts and supplies, consulting,
manufacturing and service and repair. The manufacturing industry has had over 2,300 layoffs
since September 2001. The retail industry has witnessed over 1,000 layoffs.
The table on the following pages delineates, by industry, the mass layoffs, plant closures, WARN
notices and other layoffs for Colorado from September 2001 through February 2002. But these
numbers represent just the tip of the iceberg. This table does not capture the total number of
layoffs that occurred since September 11. By federal law, companies who lay off workers due to
financial hardship or who are not laying off up to one third of the ir employees in any 90-day
Sept. 11 tipped city’s economy over the edge. The Denver Post , December 6, 2001
Colorado’ s Proposal for a National Emergency Grant, 8
period do not have to submit WARN notices. For example, one company recently laid off 475
workers without giving a WARN notice; an internet company laid off 1,200 workers. In
addition, the hospitality industry layoffs are not reflected in this table, although this industry has
suffered. Since December, several high-end hotels and resorts have laid off over 200 employees.
A food-services company laid off 500 workers.
The ripple effect of job loss is even seen in the temporary services business. These layoffs are
also not reflected in mass layoff data. Since December many temporary service agencies have
cut over 300 employees. These temporary services traditionally supply much of the support staff
to larger companies.
While the locations of layoffs in the table on the following pages are listed by region, affected
workers may live anywhere and be served by different workforce regions, particularly those that
are within the Denver- metro area. In other words, layoffs are not limited to specific regions, so
many regions may be affected by the same plant closure or mass layoff.
Colorado’ s Proposal for a National Emergency Grant, 9
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Colorado’ s Proposal for a National Emergency Grant, 11
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Colorado’ s Proposal for a National Emergency Grant, 13
Colorado’ s Proposal for a National Emergency Grant, 14
Colorado’ s Proposal for a National Emergency Grant, 15
(3) Analysis of affected population, by workforce region.
Colorado’s workforce development system is organized into nine federally-recognized regions,
with 48 One-Stop Centers that meet the needs of their dislocated workers. Each Center addresses
the diversity of people it serves and the workforce challenges it faces. The workforce regions are:
Colorado’ s Proposal for a National Emergency Grant, 16
Adams Region serves people in Adams County and is comprised of Denver’s northwest
suburbs and rural and agricultural clientele to the east. Estimated numbe rs of dislocated
workers to be served by grant funds: 620. In the Adams Region, 4,025 individuals
requested One-Stop services between October 1 and December 31, 2001. This is an
increase of 260% from the same period in the year 2000. Of these 4,025 people, all of
whom were potentially eligible for the dislocated worker program, only 319 individuals
could be served with current funds. The industries in the Adams Region most impacted
were airline-related, particularly customer service and technology manufacturing. Celestica,
an electronics manufacturing company located in Adams Region, laid off 501 workers in
February 2002. The majority of current job vacancies in the Adams Region are in
logistics/transportation, health care, call-center customer-service and licensed truck drivers.
The Adams Region has a high number of dislocated workers who are unable to find similar
work because of their limited English skills. Many of these workers have been dislocated
from the manufacturing sector, where English skills were not required for an individual to
gain employment. The region is currently piloting a new program that will meet the needs
of this dislocated worker population and sees a need to implement innovative programs that
meet the needs of dislocated workers with limited English skills. In addition to the 388
dislocated workers currently being served, another layoff of 450 workers is upcoming.
Arapahoe/Douglas Region serves people in Arapahoe and Douglas counties, Denver's
southeast suburbs, which were home to most of Colorado’s technology companies. Douglas
County continues to be one of America’s fastest growing counties. Estimated numbers of
dislocated workers to be served by grant funds: 250. In the Arapahoe/Douglas Region,
7,048 individuals requested One-Stop services between October 1 and December 31, 2001.
This is an increase of 286% from the same period in the year 2000. Of these 7,048 people,
all of whom were potentially eligible for the dislocated worker program, only 315
individuals could be served with current funds. The estimated numbers of dislocated
workers to be served are also driven by staff capacity. The Arapahoe/Douglas Region
Colorado’ s Proposal for a National Emergency Grant, 17
anticipates serving a large percentage of highly skilled workers formerly employed in the
technology industry; many have very specialized skills and will require retraining.
Residents of this region are relatively affluent and highly educated. The median household
income in 1997 was $50,748 in Arapahoe County and $77,513 in Douglas County, both
among the highest in the state and well above the statewide median income of $40,853. 10
Layoffs in this region have primarily occurred in the finance and airline sectors as well as in
customer-service call centers. Financial company Merrill Lynch will continue to lay off
employees and plans to lay off 1,260 workers by June 2002. There are job shortages in this
region in the health care and retail sectors.
Boulder Region serves people in Boulder County, which includes a major urban
population, the state's largest university, and a strong agricultural community. Estimated
numbers of dislocated workers to be served by grant funds: 250. In the Boulder Region,
2,895 individuals requested One-Stop services between October 1 and December 31, 2001.
This is an increase of 407% from the same period in the year 2000. Of these 2,895 people,
all of whom were potentially eligible for the dislocated worker program, only 80
individuals could be served with current funds. Boulder County had witnessed major
growth in the software and information technology, energy and data-security sectors. The
majority of individuals who are being laid off are highly educated and are being displaced
from the high-tech and manufacturing sectors. According to a recent study by the
Longmont Area Economic Council, Boulder County lost 2,116 primary jobs, or 13% of its
job base last year. The total number of unemployed individuals in the Boulder-Longmont
area in December 2001 was 9,181, compared with 3,212 in December 2000—an increase of
286 percent. Complex Tooling and Molding, a manufacturing company in Boulder, laid off
130 workers in December. Many of the region’s laid-off workers are requesting training
assistance to enhance their marketability to employers. There is currently a need for
Co lorado Ch ildren’s Campaign. (2001). 2001 Kids Count in Colorado!
Colorado’ s Proposal for a National Emergency Grant, 18
workers in the health care sector as well as for customer service personnel in the banking
Denver Region serves people in the City and County of Denver. This area is purely urban
and the state’s largest population center. Estimated numbers of dislocated workers to be
served by grant funds: 600. In the Denver Region, 5,430 individuals requested One-Stop
services between October 1 and December 31, 2001. This is an increase of 179% from the
same period in the year 2000. Of these 5,430 people, all of whom were potentially eligible
for the dislocated worker program, only 296 individuals could be served with current funds.
One-Stop services must address a wide range of client needs in order to serve a diverse
population that includes inner-city residents laid off from jobs as hotel service workers to
the former senior managers in multinational corporations. United Airlines laid off 1200
workers, and Continental Airlines let go 400 workers. From the financial sector, Janus
Funds has laid off 150 workers, and Bancorp has released 199 employees. While all of
these layoffs have taken place in the Denver Region, affected workers may live anywhere
and be served by other workforce regions within the Denver- metro area, which includes the
Denver, Tri-County, Adams and Arapahoe/Douglas Regions. The Denver Region is
experiencing worker shortages in nursing and other health-related occupations,
printing/publishing, specific information technology jobs, and security.
Pikes Peak Region serves people in El Paso and Teller counties. This area is very diverse,
serving Colorado’s second largest population center (Colorado Springs), people in small
mountain communities (Teller County) and a large rural and agricultural area east of
Colorado Springs. Estimated numbers of dislocated workers to be served by grant
funds: 1,000. In the Pikes Peak Region, 4,480 individuals requested One-Stop services
between October 1 and December 31, 2001. This is an increase of 206% from the same
period in the year 2000. Of these 4,480 people, all of whom were potentially eligible for
the dislocated worker program, only 203 individuals could be served with current funds.
Colorado’ s Proposal for a National Emergency Grant, 19
Eighty percent of the job losses in this region have been in the technology sector, primarily
in manufacturing and administration. In the Pikes Peak Region, communications company
LSI Logic has 500 layoffs pending, while the technology company Quantum anticipates
releasing a total of 369 workers. This region continues to see a shortage of workers in
health care and education. This Region is also seeing vacancies in the financial sector,
which is in contrast to the rest of the state experiencing losses in this sector.
Larimer Region serves people in Larimer County. Primarily rural, this county encompasses
large areas of farmland, but also includes Fort Collins, Colorado’s largest northern city.
With an estimated population of 260,000 residents, Larimer County is the seventh largest
county in Colorado. Estimated numbers of dislocated workers to be served by grant
funds: 150. In the Larimer Region, 1,715 individuals requested One-Stop services between
October 1 and December 31, 2001, an increase of 161% from the same period in the year
2000. Of these 1,715 people, all of whom were potentially eligible for the dislocated worker
program, only 173 individuals could be served with current funds. Many of the individuals
who could be served by this grant have already been laid off and have applied for dislocated
worker services. It is anticipated that more program participants would be recruited if
additional funding were available. Layoffs have occurred primarily in travel and
transportation, technology, financial services, and telecommunication jobs. Technology
company E M Solutions laid off 192 employees in October 2001. Similarly to all regions in
the state, there is a shortage of health care workers and educators. The Larimer Region is
also in need of truck drivers, computer-control programmers/operators, and
Tri-County Region serves people from Jefferson, Gilpin, and Clear Creek counties. Tri-
County includes a major suburban population in Jefferson County and smaller communities
in the foothills of the Rocky Mountains. Gilpin and Clear Creek counties are home to many
mountain communities, two of which derive their primary income from gambling
Colorado’ s Proposal for a National Emergency Grant, 20
businesses. Estimated numbers of dislocated workers to be served by grant funds: 75.
In the Tri-County Region, 2,590 individuals requested Workforce Center services between
October 1 and December 31, 2001. This is an increase of 204% from the same period in the
year 2000. Of these 2,590 people, all of whom were potentially eligible for the dislocated
worker program, only 142 individuals could be served with current funds. Dislocated
workers here have lost jobs from the airline industry, travel agencies, hospitality/tourism
occupations and the telecommunications sector. Lucent Technologies, a
telecommunications company, laid off 70 workers in the fall of 2001. Industries in the Tri-
County Region reporting significant job vacancies include the service industry,
health/hospitals, and trucking.
Weld Region serves the people of Weld County, primarily an agricultural and rural area
with a major population center (Greeley) that services the rural and agricultural
communities. The third largest county in Colorado, Weld County has an area greater tha n
that of Rhode Island, Delaware, and the District of Columbia combined. Estimated
numbers of dislocated workers to be served by grant funds: 60. In the Weld Region, 648
individuals requested One-Stop services between October 1 and December 31, 2001, an
increase of 81% from the same period in the year 2000. Of these 648 people, all of whom
were potentially eligible for the dislocated worker program, only 142 individuals could be
served with current funds. Within this region there has been a general decline in job
availability and downsizing in a number of industries including manufacturing, electronics
and a local printing company. Weld County has experienced a major plant closure of Sykes
Enterprises, which released 290 employees. This region sees continual shortages in the areas
of health care, transportation, computer-control operations, and technical trade areas.
The Rural Consortium comprises Colorado’s remaining 52 counties, which are subdivided
into 11 workforce regions. This region serves all of eastern, south-central, southwest, and
northwest Colorado, areas which are rural and primarily reliant on agriculture as the
Colorado’ s Proposal for a National Emergency Grant, 21
dominant industry. In Colorado’s far west, Grand Junction represents an urban population.
Estimated numbe rs of dislocated workers to be served by grant funds: 200. In the
Rural Consortium, 5,251 individuals requested Workforce Center services between October
1 and December 31, 2001. This is an increase of 64% from the same period in the year
2000. Of these 5,251 people, all of whom were potentially eligible for the dislocated worker
program, only 359 individuals could be served with current funds. The region is also home
to Colorado’s mountain resort towns, the locations of the skiing and tourism industries,
which have been hit hardest by September 11. Resort bookings are down from the previous
year, and the result is rippling through the local economies. The Rural Consortium has
experienced layoffs in service, retail, construction, and lumber occupations. City Market, a
food-store chain located in the Mesa Region of the Rural Consortium, is currently releasing
127 workers. Sectors in need of workers are health care and agriculture.
(4) Methods that are being used and will be used to maintain contact with workers
In response to the dislocation of thousands of workers since September 11, Colorado has
undertaken an aggressive early intervention strategy designed to ensure a rapid transition of
workers to suitable employment or enrollment in intensive and training services.
The early intervention process starts with the identification of potential layoffs through WARN
notices; review of newspaper articles, TV and radio broadcasts, and Internet web sites; and
personal contact with business columnists and broadcasters, as well as local chambers o f
commerce, Unemployment Insurance (UI), and Workforce Center staff. Within 48 hours of
obtaining layoff information, the State Rapid Response Team contacts the employer to arrange
an initial planning meeting and notifies UI, the local Workforce Development Council
representative, TAA/NAFTA and the local union, if appropriate. Employers are encouraged to
allow layoff assistance workshops as soon as possible prior to layoff and to identify the special
needs of those being affected by the layoff. In addition, employers are asked for information on
secondary companies that may be displacing workers due to loss of subcontracts.
Colorado’ s Proposal for a National Emergency Grant, 22
Layoff assistance workshops have consisted of:
Presentations on dislocated worker services available through the local One-Stop Centers
How to access services online
How to file for unemployment insurance, TAA and NAFTA information when appropriate
Money management tips
Pension and health care coverage issues
Identification of transferable skills
Early intervention strategies have also included: development and operation of on-site career
centers; resume writing workshops; counseling, testing, and assessment; interpreters; working in
conjunction with outplacement agencies engaged by the employer; s etting up job fairs for
affected employees; and establishing a labor management committee.
A separate Rapid Response Team has been given the responsibility for oversight and delivery of
rapid response activities across the state. In the Denver-metro area and in the northern Front
Range counties, state staff have conducted planning meetings and layoff assistance workshops,
as well as other early intervention activities, in conjunction with local workforce staff designated
as rapid response coordinators. In the remainder of the state, Workforce Center staff assumed
responsibility for rapid response services and reported their activities to the State Rapid
Response Team. To ensure high quality of rapid response services, the State Rapid Response
Team held five train-the-trainer sessions two years ago with local rapid response coordinators.
Participants were trained on how to conduct planning meetings and layoff assistance workshops
in a manner consistent with state staff practices. Agreement was also reached on a standardized
presentation format for providing information about local workforce services.
Once an individual is enrolled in a One-Stop Center, an Individual Employment Plan is
developed, which identifies employment goals and objectives and the services the participant
Colorado’ s Proposal for a National Emergency Grant, 23
will access. This plan also established the level of contact needed. This contact can range from
weekly phone calls to email communication or monthly meetings. The minimum amount of
contact is every 60 days.
(5) Employees dislocated because of relocation or transfer
The data provided by the workforce development directors in the various regions indicates that
the target group is not composed of individuals who are dislocated as a result of a company
relocation or transfer to another location. The target group in this application is individuals who
became dislocated as a result of the attacks on September 11.
(6) Potentially trade-impacted dislocation and status of NAFTA or TAA petitions
The table below lists reported layoffs at trade- impacted employers, certified after September 11.
Firm Location Status # Wkrs Product
Complex Tooling & 130+ Injection mold plastic
230 Electronics testing
Agilent Technologies Fort Collins Pending
Hewlett Packard NA Electronics
NuTech Denver Certified - Shift in NA Wastewater treatment
Environmental production to Canada chemicals, equipment
Micro Motion Boulder Certified - Shift in 20+ Mass flow meters.
Incl: Aorist production to Mexico transmitters
Brooks Automation Colorado Certified - Shift in 14 Power transmission
Incl: Volt Technical, Springs production to Canada components
EM Solutions Longmont Pending 192 Wiring harnesses
Hershey Chocolate Wheatridge Pending NA Jolly Rancher Brand
and Confectionery hard candies
Celestica Westminster Pending 501 PC Boards
Qwark Denver Pending NA Communications
Colorado’ s Proposal for a National Emergency Grant, 24
The next table lists previously certified firms reporting post-9/11 layoffs:
Firm Location Status # Wkrs Product
Samsonite Aurora Certified 108 Luggage
Quantum Colorado Certified 682 Electronic Components
In most cases, the Employment and Training Administration has determined that trade impact
preceded September 11; yet the actual layoffs occurred in late 2001 and early 2002. Under the
Trade Adjustment Assistance (TAA), the layoff of any member of a trade-affected class within
the certification period qualifies the worker for Trade Act benefits. Since the certification period
is at least two and usually three years and begins a year prior to issuance of the certification, later
layoffs typically occur for reasons different than those of the earlier layoffs.
Sufficient TAA funds (Trade Adjustment Assistance) are available to address the reemployment
needs of these workers; however, there are issues that Trade Act funds cannot directly address:
Low or marginal skills. Some workers need such extensive remedial training that
vocational retraining cannot be accomplished within the time restraints of TAA. Such
redemption (which may include English as a Second Language (ESL) training) must be
undertaken prior to TAA-approved training and purchased with non-TAA funds.
Inadequate financial resources to complete vocational training. Workers needing long-
term training often find that unemployment insurance and TRA (Trade Readjustment
Allowance) will exhaust well before training is completed. Acknowledgment of this
shortfall is sufficient reason to deny retraining, if no other source of support for non-
training-related expenses is available.
Noncredential training. A worker needing "brush- up" skills training or remedial training to
address reemployment barriers is, in some cases, not approvable under TAA, even when it
is approvable that the worker may be better served receiving such training outside TAA,
since TAA is a lifetime benefit but may only be used once per trade-affected layoff.
Colorado’ s Proposal for a National Emergency Grant, 25
Of course, all of the above are interrelated and ro utinely addressed with Dislocated Worker
funds. It should be noted, though, that the number of Trade Act participants requiring these
services is significantly higher than usual. Their employers, except Samsonite, are not listed here
because they did not have post-September layoffs. However, in the post-September 11 scenario,
the barriers to their reemployment will likely be much harder to overcome. First, a significant
number of TAA participants who need and are receiving remedial training (primarily ESL) are
from employers with no post-September 11 layoffs. However, these workers will likely still
suffer the effect of the post-September 11 economy as their language barriers, though reduced,
may not be fully eliminated. TAA will provide sufficient langua ge skills so that they can
complete vocational training, but additional language (and other) skills could exist so training
may be necessary. Consequently, their job search effort will likely extend well beyond their
unemployment insurance and TRA benefits. This population of workers is also competing
against the growing numbers of new and highly skilled dislocated workers.
c. Analysis of labor market conditions
While Colorado’s labor force has seen dramatic layoffs in the technology, telecommunications,
financial, airline, and tourism sectors, other industries in the state are offering employment
opportunities. Colorado’s Occupational Employment Outlook for 1998 - 2008 provides general
projections of occupational demand. Released in January 2001, the report projects that the
services sector will experience the most growth, creating 305,000 of 855,000 new jobs,
representing 35.7% of the growth in Colorado occupations. Specific occupational groups within
the services sector which offer jobs in the highest demand are educational services (45,000 new
jobs) and health services (38,000 new jobs). In addition, Colorado is experiencing a burgeoning
growth in homeland security and defense.
Education According to Alexandra Hall, a senior economist with the Colorado Department of
Labor, a sector with a large number of job vacancies is education. The need for more educators
Colorado’ s Proposal for a National Emergency Grant, 26
continues to increase in Colorado as the state experiences dramatic population growth and
initiatives to reduce class size in public schools. In add ition, the baby boomers who once made
up a large percentage of educators are now retiring.
Health services are viable options of placement for those dislocated workers who were earning
high wages. These higher wage earners tend to have a higher level of ed ucation, skills, and work
experience. This profile fits many of Colorado’s dislocated workers who have lost jobs in the
financial and technology sectors. For these individuals, placement into a high-wage health care
or education job may be realized by Colorado’s One-Stop focus on fast-track training. This
training concentrates on the skills an individual has rather than working to help them obtain new
skills. Building off an individual’s existing skills, coupled with fast-track training, will allow
more dislocated workers to go back to work faster and earn wages that are comparable to their
One of the advantages of placing dislocated workers in the health care sector is the versatility of
different occupations within the field. For example, Colorado is in need of Home Health Aides,
which require only short-term on-the-job training and can earn between $7.74 and $12.67 per
hour. Registered Nurses, who are also in demand, need to have an Associate degree but can earn
between $17.07 and $28.09 per hour. 11
Another benefit of placing job seekers in the health care sector is that these jobs offer some of
the highest wages. Depending on the region in which the health care worker resides, an
individual in this field can earn anywhere between $6.50 and $30.00 an hour.
Homeland Security and Defense is another projected job-growth industry in the state. The
entire defense industry is on the upswing following September 11 as more federal dollars are
allocated to homeland defense and military applications. 12 A Colorado Springs-based division of
Co lorado Depart ment of Labor and Emp loyment, Labor Market Informat ion, Workforce Research and Analysis.
(2001). Occupational Employment Outlook, 1998 – 2008.
Springs ITT unit to create 250 jobs after defense deal, The Denver Post, February 27, 2002.
Colorado’ s Proposal for a National Emergency Grant, 27
ITT Industries, Inc. announced that it will create 250 software and hardware jobs after winning a
potential 18-year military contract worth $950 million. In the 1990s, the aerospace industry and
defense contractors lost IT workers to start-up companies that offered stock options and a fast-
paced environment. According to John Williams, a spokesman for the National Defense
Industrial Association, September 11 put back in the spotlight cutting-edge technologies such as
unmanned aircraft. Defense contractors, including Lockheed Martin, project that they will
employ 4,500 people in Colorado by the end of this year. 13 Best estimates now are that these
jobs will pay from $60,000 to $70,000 a year.
The demand jobs cited by Colorado’s Occupational Employment Outlook are reinforced by the
state’s Job Vacancy Surveys. These surveys were conducted in all Workforce Regions
throughout 2001 and revealed that specific occupational groups which offer the most vacancies
are food preparation and serving, health care practitioner and technical workers, and office and
administrative support. In addition to job opportunities in the health care and education sectors,
which are available statewide, regional job vacancies are presented in the table below.
Results of Colorado Workforce Regional Job Vacancy Surveys (2001) and Regional Reporting
Region Job Vacancies
Denver Metro (this includes the Adams, This area reported 26,400 jobs open, with an overall
Arapahoe/Douglas, Boulder, and Denver Wor kforce average wage for all vacancies of $14.90/hour. There
Regions) were over 2,700 jobs available in Health Care
Practitioners and Technicians; almost 2,400 vacancies in
Office and Administrative Suppor t; and hundreds of jobs
available in each of the following occupational groups:
Architecture and Engineering; and Education, Training,
Denver Region Infor mation technology occupations
Adams Licensed truck drivers
Customer service representatives
Arapahoe/Douglas Service and retail industries
Defense workforce aging, The Denver post, January 13, 2002.
Colorado’ s Proposal for a National Emergency Grant, 28
Boulder Banking personnel
Customer service representatives
Denver Infor mation technology
Larimer Licensed truck drivers
Call Center/Help Desk specialists
Pikes Peak Defense
Tri-County Licensed truck drivers
Rural Agricultural laborers
Weld Licensed truck drivers
Computer control programs and operations
With a large number of mass layoffs occurring in the technology, finance, and
telecommunications sectors, Colorado recognizes the need to place dislocated workers in new
jobs that offer high wages which are comparable to those of their former occupations. The table
on the following page delineates the high-wage jobs projected by the Colorado Department of
Labor and Employment to be in demand for 1998 – 2008.
Occupational Title Annual Total Openings Mean/Annual Wage
Electricians 610 $20.42
Automotive/Technicians 590 $17.36
Specialists 1380 $19.55
Registered Nurses 990 $21.90
Systems Analysts 1120 $31.23
Computer Programme rs 1080 $31.39
School 930 $41,490*
Computer Engineers 910 $36.79
Teachers, Ele mentary 690 $36,780*
Colorado’ s Proposal for a National Emergency Grant, 29
Accountants & Auditors 680 $23.66
Elec. Engineers 470 $23.41
Fin. Svcs. Sales Agents 330 $31.49
Database Administrators 250 $27.15
Marketing/Sales Supvrs. 1500 $35.99
Engineers/Systems Mgrs 620 $41.65
Financial Managers 460 $34.53
Mkt/PR/Sales Managers 450 $27.28
* Teacher salaries are only given as annual salaries since they do not work a 12-month year.
The variation in these different types of job opportunities throughout the state closely mirrors the
diversity of Colorado’s dislocated workers. It is for this reason that Colorado’s One Stop centers
are designed to be universally accessible and meet the needs of individuals with very different
skills, educational backgrounds and interests. The training and other strategies outlined later in
this proposal will allow Colorado to identify the transferable skills of its dislocated workers, and
either match them to existing jobs in high demand areas or provide fast-track training in new
d. Project planning
Colorado has taken several steps to address the impact of September 11 on the state’s workforce.
First, the state deployed Rapid Response Teams to handle the increased need for job placement,
training and unemployment claims. These teams met with airline employees at Denver
International Airport (DIA) and at airline offices. The state also opened temporary
unemployment claims offices at DIA and offered a series of general workshops in large hotels in
the metro area. These workshops were broadly advertised on Department of Labor web sites, at
One-Stop Centers and on a local news channel. Employers who had laid off workers, and those
who were anticipating layoffs, were given information about these workshops to post in their
Colorado’ s Proposal for a National Emergency Grant, 30
offices and on their phone messaging systems to reach the maximum number of people. The
number of laid-off or soon-to-be laid-off Colorado workers attending the Colorado Department
of Labor’s Rapid Response Workshops has substantially increased since September 11. In all of
the year 2001, 2,575 laid-off workers attended a workshop; more than half of those (1,597)
workers attended a workshop in the three- month period following September 11. If this trend
continues, it is estimated that over 6,300 workers will attend workshops in 2002.
Second, the Regional Workforce Directors have met monthly to address the impact of September
11 on their own regions’ dislocated workers, and to develop a plan to help these workers reenter
In response to massive airline industry layoffs in October, two metro-area Workforce Centers
initiated discussions to explore the feasibility of connecting laid-off workers with the shortage of
labor supply evidenced in the health care, education and business services sectors. A series of
meetings took place that included the Colorado Department of Labor and Employment, Labor
Market Information economists, the Office of Workforce Development and directors from
Workforce Regions. The group analyzed data derived from UI/Job link, Rapid Response
Workshops and media coverage of layoffs throughout the entire state. This analysis led to one
conclusion: Additional funds were needed to respond to the thousands of workers who had lost
their jobs as a result of the September 11 attacks, particularly in the key industry sectors, such as
the airlines/tourism, technology, telecommunications, and financial sectors. The group also
identified the following urgent needs: to create a system to address the needs of higher wage
earners; to design an assessment system that gives laid-off workers credit for existing skills; and
to establish a process to allow students to test into certificate programs, thus reducing seat-time
Focused interviews were held with dislocated workers at selected centers to identify their
training needs. A majority of the displaced workers interviewed were between 30 and 40 years of
age (58%), 25% were between 22 and 30, and 17% were 21 or younger. Most had a high school
Colorado’ s Proposal for a National Emergency Grant, 31
diploma (58%); others had some college study (17%) or a bachelor’s degree (17%).
Interviewees tended to come from well-paying jobs; 25% had earned more than $25/hour, 42%
earned between $10 and $15 per hour, and 33% earned less than $10 per hour. The highest-
paying jobs were concentrated in the technology and construction sectors, and most people said
they had been laid off because of company downsizing (58%).
Interviewees came from diverse sectors and expressed interest in many different fields.
Respondents cited health, education, construction, hospitality, technology, telecommunications,
entrepreneurial endeavors, art, manufacturing, business and a host of other areas as fields in
which they were interested. Everyone interviewed was interested in receiving training and
would participate in anywhere from three months to more than a year if certain incentives were
included (e.g., free training, stipends, daycare, a guaranteed job after training, job security, health
care benefits, parking and transportation, job placement services, opportunities for advancement
in the new sector and training that included skill-building). All interviewees said that mass
marketing would be necessary to let people know about the training program, including TV,
radio and newspaper ads and fliers in grocery stores, workforce centers, post offices, clothing
stores and malls.
A questionnaire was distributed to all Regional Workforce Directors to solicit their specific
recommendations on how NEG funds could best be deployed in their regions to address the
needs of their clients and the increased demand for services since September 11. The strategies
delineated in the next section of this proposal reflect this key stakeholder input that was solicited
throughout the project planning period.
e. Project implementation
(1) Project management
The Colorado Department of Labor and Employment (CDLE) will be responsible for the overall
administration of the proposed NEG project with oversight from the Workforce Development
Colorado’ s Proposal for a National Emergency Grant, 32
Council and the Business, Industry and Education Advisory Panel. (A description of this panel is
detailed below in the Coordination and Linkages section). CDLE will ensure that the grant funds
are managed effectively and in compliance with federal regulations and agreements entered into
with the U.S. Department of Labor. CDLE has extensive experience in managing federal grants,
including an NRA grant of six million dollars that will be fully expended by June 2002.
The State will implement a request for proposal, called an Expenditure Authorization (EA)
process. The nine Regional Workforce Centers will submit an (EA) form to apply for and access
funding received from the NEG grant. In the EA, Workforce Centers will be required to identify
the scope of work to be performed, and the services to be delivered, submit quarterly
expenditures, enrollments and assurances, and provide required reports. An Expenditure
Authorization form is found in the Attachments.
(2) Client service process
Each of Colorado’s Workforce Development Centers provides core, intensive and training
services authorized under WIA through local One-Stop Centers located in 48 communities across
the state. These include: eligibility determination fo r programs; outreach; orientation and intake
to available services; skills and aptitude assessment; job search and job placement assistance;
customized training; and on-the-job training. Centers also offer a menu of supportive services,
which enable an individual who can’t afford to pay for such services to participate in training.
These include costs such as childcare, mileage reimbursement and payment for physical
examinations needed for training.
The proposed services to be offered with NEG project funds will be provided within the
framework of the existing One-Stop system, thus ensuring that Colorado can continue to mount
the rapid, flexible response to quickly changing local conditions.
Colorado’ s Proposal for a National Emergency Grant, 33
(3) Services to be provided with project funds
CDLE will use a three-pronged approach to strengthen existing services and better meet the
demand for services.
First, through the EA process, Workforce Development Regions will identify what they need to
build their capacity to meet the demand for services for the diverse and expanding dislocated
workers population in their regions. This may include:
Increasing recruitment efforts with local employers
Conducting outreach to raise awareness of service with employers
Staff development using competency-based approaches
Training staff on new strategies in reverse recruitment techniques and targeting marketing
to new and expanding businesses
Developing and coordinating employer involvement in skill-shortage areas to identify
specific training options
Developing new fast-track and/or customized training options
Adding staff to meet increased demand for services
Pikes Peak Workforce Center in Colorado Springs has developed an innovative program to meet
the different needs of a new group of dislocated workers. The Executive Network, a job club
established to assist those in executive or higher managerial positions, was developed as a means
of providing new services to new customers – the managerial/professional- level dislocated
worker, of which the One-Stop Centers are seeing more and more. These new customers want to
talk with others in their situation, receive the most recent labor market information, and learn
how to navigate back into employment. The Executive Network offers networking seminars,
sessions on how to write resumes from an executive perspective, employer information sessions
and brings in guest speakers from key industries in the area. For example, the director of the
Small Business Development Center spoke on starting a business; another individual spoke on
the Department of Defense (DOD) employment opportunities and on security licensing
Colorado’ s Proposal for a National Emergency Grant, 34
requirements for DOD jobs. The group has also set up a list serve enabling them to e- mail each
other with job leads and employment information. The group consists of 60 members and it is
anticipated to double in size during the next few months.
The Pikes Peak Workforce Center has also been involved in a partnership with The McFamily
Program, a program developed by an owner of nine Colorado Springs McDonald’s franchises
and designed to stabilize the lives of low-wage, entry- level workers. The program was designed
to provide six major benefits – health care, childcare, transportation, housing, communication
and education. The program engages workers though a partnership between the employer, the
local workforce center, and state agencies to harness the services of community-based
organizations, public foundations and private industry to provide benefits similar to those
enjoyed by higher wage workers, all of which help to stabilize families. Stable families become
successful employees leading to reduced turnover and increased profitability for businesses.
The Pikes Peak Workforce Center provides some of the educational components for McFamily
Program participants, who are co-enrolled into the WIA and can access educational services such
as literacy and computer-based training services. Pikes Peak Community College collaborates
by providing classes in basic work skills.
Based on the experience, involvement and success with the McFamily program, The Pikes Peak
Workforce Investment Board in collaboration with the Colorado Workforce Development
Council has created an innovative Employer of Excellence program. This program establishes
three levels of employers from which employees transition up a career ladder. The first level is
based on the McFamily Program and includes all industries employing entry level workers. The
second two levels are currently being developed. The goal is to replicate this project throughout
Second, CDLE will support innovative new strategies to assist workforce centers to quickly
train dislocated workers for new jobs focusing on helping all workers identify and use
transferable skills. As described in the target analysis section, many of the new dislocated
Colorado’ s Proposal for a National Emergency Grant, 35
workers are high-skill, high- wage workers who have transferable skills. Workers may need to
acquire some additional skills for employment in a new industry, but don’t need to complete a
full, lengthy training program. Building on the individ ual’s transferable skills and matching skills
to demand occupations will accelerate reemployment. This program will target high-skill, high-
wage occupations that have been identified by local and statewide research and data banks and
those demand occupations that Workforce Centers have identified in their own regions. This
represents a public-private, multiagency effort with participating agencies and organizations
including: the State Workforce Development Council; the Office of Innovation and Technology;
the Office of Economic Development; the Colorado Department of Labor and Employment; the
Colorado Department of Education; Community Colleges of Colorado; Colorado Association of
Commerce and Industry; and the National Federation of Independent Businesses (See
Memoranda of Understand in the Attachments for complete list of panel members). As discussed
in the Coordination Section, this advisory group will assist in identifying the current demand
occupations and developing linkages with employers within diffe rent industries and regions.
This second prong of the proposed program will include the following innovative strategies:
Strategy 1: Targeted marketing. In the last year, the marketing needs for Workforce Regions
in the state have reversed. No longer are there few job applicants who can have their pick of
employers with multiple vacancies. CDLE is planning innovative strategies to address this
Reverse recruitment—placing skill profiles of job seekers in local media classified
sections. This strategy has been effective in Denver and will now be utilized statewide. For
example, in response to the sudden and considerable layoffs as a result of September 11
affecting employees of the airline industry, the Denver Mayor’s Office of Workforce
Development (MOWD) purchased a single full-page ad highlighting the skills sets of 230
former airline employees and targeted the ad to the Denver business community. The
applicants had to have been former airline (or airline-related) employees, recently laid-off,
Colorado’ s Proposal for a National Emergency Grant, 36
and registered in MOWD’s job-seeker database. Thirty-three employers in the Denver-
metro area contacted MOWD, producing over 300 job referrals. Nearly every applicant who
participated in this effort was contacted with at least one job referral.
Industry specific job development—identifying those industries where opportunities are
most available and establishing partnerships with industries that want workers, such as
health care. Sectoral job-development models involve creating a unified effort amo ng
public, private and nonprofit entities to meet the needs of an industry with demand
occupations. Sectoral recruitment models will:
Target a population that is currently underrepresented in an industry
Identify recruitment ventures that can be used to reach the targeted population
Coordinate efforts to provide employment access in the industry
Address any potential barriers toward employment (e.g., transportation and
childcare) that can be met through available resources provided by community-
Identify ways workforce centers can provide, coordinate and/or develop
partnerships for technical and/or financial assistance to dislocated workers.
The Health Care Occupations Initiative, coordinated by the Mesa County Workforce Center, is a
pilot program to identify, train and match job seekers to jobs in health care. This Workforce
Center has built a coalition of health care providers, which will help recruit, assess and train
individuals for high demand jobs in the health care field.
The Colorado Workforce Development Council was the recipient of a USDOL Community
Audit grant for a project entitled MOVING UP, which was a state- led, multi-area project
focusing on advancing Colorado’s lower-wage workers. Among other activities, this project
identified information leading to career ladders for upward mobility and conducted a job and
skill analysis that provided a skills profile for the dominant jobs within two broad geographic
Colorado’ s Proposal for a National Emergency Grant, 37
regions including the five county Denver metro area and rural Colorado. The information
collected has provided valuable information for workforce regions to use.
Strategy 2: Assessment development. Workforce Regions will enhance their current
assessment procedures to better capitalize on the strengths, knowledge and experie nce of highly
educated job seekers. One option is to use assessment tools, such as College-Level Examination
Program (CLEP), to allow individuals to ―test out‖ of skill requirements needed for demand jobs
and focus on the training they need to qualify for another job. The state will provide technical
assistance on assessment tool(s) that are identified to help Workforce Regions better streamline
identification of what specific job training highly skilled clients need.
Strategy 3: Job training. Once workforce center staff have identified the skills needed for a
high-demand, well-paying job, workforce centers will coordinate the necessary training. The
project will provide concentrated programs. This program will be modeled after the QuickStart
Careers program, a partnership between the Denver Mayor’s Office of Workforce Development
and Community College of Denver. This new program will be an educational and training
program that qualifies individuals for high-demand, well-paying jobs in the metro area.
QuickStart Careers has identified industries where there are jobs available and specific
professions within each industry, entry-level wages and the training that is required. In the last
year, QuickStart has assisted over 100 QuickStart applicants, providing training in the following
Business Services —training for Operational and Managerial Accountants
Health Care—training for Licensed Practical Nurses, Registered Nurses, Medical
Multimedia and Printing—training for web site developers and printers
Trades and Industry—training for machinists and welders
Information Technology—training for networking associates, computer service technician
and network specialists
Colorado’ s Proposal for a National Emergency Grant, 38
Regions will also identify demand occupations and develop training progra ms that can accelerate
the reemployment of individuals. Depending on the needs and resources of a specific One-Stop
Center, job training can be done in several ways:
Partnership with a community college. Workforce Boulder County and Front Range
Community College has partnered to assist a private employer (Leanin’ Tree) with job
specific and basic language skills for front line and supervisory staff. Training is provided
through short-term specialty workshops and formal language instruction.
Customized training with an e mployer. In a unique pairing of local government and
business, Workforce Boulder County teamed up with Sun Microsystems to offer training in
Solaris, A UNIX operating system. The goal of this seven-week training program is to
provide enhanced employment opportunities for job-seekers. The training consists of
classes in the Solaris System offered by Sun Microsystems, and workshops on customer
service skills, team building and problem solving. These, and other programs described
earlier, could be expanded with grant funds to serve more dislocated workers.
Utilizing distance learning. The State has recently purchased a lifelong learning portal for
adult education. The current capabilities of this portal provide self-assessment and training
tools for current professional staff of Colorado’s Workforce Development Regions to build
internal capacity, effectiveness and efficiency related to the services they provide to
dislocated workers. The portal is in the process of being expanded in order to pro vide
direct access to dislocated workers throughout the state. Once this capability is available,
individuals will be able to link directly with the site, accessing resources for assessing their
skills, aptitudes and interests and participating in online education and training
opportunities to enhance and increase their employability.
Offering additional training through existing training providers approved by the local
workforce development board.
The final prong of Colorado’s approach is the option to develop interregional collaboration.
This approach addresses the differences of each region and capitalizes on their strengths.
Colorado’ s Proposal for a National Emergency Grant, 39
Workforce Regions will collaborate to provide different kinds of services to the same customer,
maximizing the services to meet the unique needs of each client. For example, one region may
have the capacity to provide core and intensive services; another region may offer specialized
training at a local community college designed to provide the fast-track learning necessary to
obtain the additional qualifications and transfer skills into a demand occupation.
On the following page is an overview of services to be provided by each region with NEG funds.
Overview of Services to be Provided by Region with NEG funds
Region # to be Core/ Training Needs- Supportive Out-of-area Relocation
served intensive related job search assistance
Adams 620 560 358 0 86 0 0
Arapahoe/ 250 250 200 0 100 0 0
Boulder 250 210 150 0 130 0 0
Denver 600 600 408 0 180 75 30
Larimer 150 150 90 0 30 0 0
Pikes Peak 1,000 1,000 550 104 500 7 7
Tri-County 75 75 50 0 50 0 0
Weld 60 60 60 0 40 5 5
Rural 200 200 180 0 75 0 10
Total # to be 3,205
Implementation Schedule. The specific enrollments, projected training and other perfo rmance
goals for Colorado overall are found in the Implementation Schedule in the Attachments.
Colorado’ s Proposal for a National Emergency Grant, 40
(4) Performance outcomes
Each proposed project will be expected to achieve the following end-of-project performance
Entered employment rate = 75%
Wage replacement rate for entered employments = 90%
Customer satisfaction rating of ―extremely‖ or ―very satisfied‖ with the services
received = 70%
(5) Mechanisms used to ensure worker involvement in planning and
As part of its application requirements for funding, the state will require Workforce Regions to
identify the mechanisms they will use to ensure involvement of dislocated workers in the
planning and implementation of their projects. Input from Regional Workforce Directors during
the proposal planning process indicates that they will continue to use the following effective
strategies to ensure worker involvement in the planning process:
Convening focus groups of the targeted population
Conducting surveys of the target population to identify training needs
Involving dislocated workers on local advisory councils
(6) Needs-related payments
Colorado’s needs-related payments policy can be found in Policy Guidance Letter # 99-21-E6 in
the Attachments. To summarize, the policy provides for the following:
Eligible dislocated workers who have ceased to qualify for Unemployment compensation
must have been enrolled in training by the end of the 13 th week of his/her initial UI
compensation benefit period.
The term ―enrolled in training or education program‖ means that the worker’s application
for training has been approved and the training institution has furnished written notice that
Colorado’ s Proposal for a National Emergency Grant, 41
the worker has been accepted in the approved training program beginning within 30
calendar days. Approved training does not include on-the-job training.
Needs-related payments shall not be provided to any participant for the period that such
individual is employed, enrolled in or receiving on-the-job training, out-of-area job search,
or basic readjustment services.
The level of needs-related payments, which may be made available to a dislocated worker
may not exceed the higher of: 1) The applicable level of unemployment compensation, or
2) The poverty level established by the director of the Office of Management a nd Budget.
f. Coordination and linkages
Project coordination will take place at both the statewide and regional levels.
The Colorado Department of Labor and Employment, in conjunction with the state Workforce
Development Council, has convened an extensive group of partners to serve on an advisory
panel. This council represents key players from all arenas in workforce development, business,
employment, education and training, and includes representatives from: the Colorado Office of
Workforce Development; State Workforce Development Council; the Colorado Department of
Labor and Employment; Office of Innovation and Technology; Office of Economic
Development; Colorado Department of Education; Colorado Department of Higher Education;
Community Colleges of Colorado; the Colorado Association of Commerce and Industry and
As outlined in the attached Memoranda of Understanding, these agencies have committed to
work together to provide insight and leadership to achieve the objectives of the NEG proposal
and to successfully meet Colorado’s unemployment challenges.
The proposed project will also link with the CDLE’s Health Care Administration (HCA) health
care grant it recently submitted. This HCA project is designed to increase the capacity of the
educational system and the health care industry to produce the certified and degreed health care
professionals needed by HCA and other health care providers, and increase the ability of
Colorado’ s Proposal for a National Emergency Grant, 42
Colorado’s Workforce Centers to provide trained workers for the health care industry. The NEG
proposal will implement this model of ―New Hire‖ concept by identifying the needs of
employers and then training job seekers to meet these needs. On a local level, Workforce
Development Regions have developed and will continue to develop partnerships with employers,
government, trade and labor groups and community organizations to assist dislocated workers to
reenter the workforce. Many of these partnerships address the provision of additional training
and education. Additionally, Workforce Regions will develop interregional collaboration of
services in order to maximize the range of services available. As discussed in the
Implementation section, interregional collaboration means that one region may provide core and
intensive services to a worker, while another region offers specific training through a local
community college. Both regions will work together to maximize services to meet an
individual’s specific needs.
g. State’s administrative responsibilities
The grant recipient for the NEG is the Colorado Department of Labor and Employment (CDLE).
Operational oversight will reside with the Employment and Training Programs (E&T) Unit.
State-Level Administration includes the supervision of both the direct personnel under the grant
and the indirect units described below, subrecipient audit resolution activities, subrecipient fiscal
monitoring, development of contract language, contract tracking through the signature and
approval process, statewide grievance oversight, Equal Employment Opportunity monitoring and
reporting, procurement monitoring, and policy development in each of the aforementioned areas.
Tom Ivory is the Director of Employment and Training Programs.
Elise Lowe-Vaughn, the Operations Manager of the Employment & Training Programs, will act
as Grant Manager to this project. Ms. Lowe-Vaughn, who is a Labor and Employment Specialist
(LES IV), has a Master’s degree in Counseling and Evaluation and brings 23 years of
Colorado’ s Proposal for a National Emergency Grant, 43
employment and training program experience at both the local and state level and has managed
numerous federal grants.
The Operations Unit administers federal and state programs including the WIA, Wagner-Peyser,
Welfare-to-Work, TAA/NAFTA, Alien Labor Certification, Work Opportunity Tax Credit and
Displaced Homemaker Programs. The Unit is responsible for establishing program policy,
conducting compliance monitoring and program oversight and technical assistance. Unit staff
are the state liaisons to the local workforce development regions, the local workforce boards and
the Colorado Workforce Development Council. Within the Unit, a State Field Representative
will be assigned to the NEG project and will be responsible for tracking, monitoring, and
submitting all required federal reports.
The financial management of the grant will reside with the Reporting and Analysis Unit within
the Controller's Office of the Department of Labor and Employment. The unit is managed by
Susan Meade and provides responsible fiscal management for the Department's numerous federal
Susan Meade, an Accountant IV, has a BS in Accounting from Metropolitan State College of
Denver and an MBA from the University of Colorado at Denver. She is a CPA with over ten
years of complex grant accounting experience. The Reporting and Analysis Unit consists of
several functional areas. Three of the areas, Cash Management, Cost Accounting, and Federal
Reporting, will be primarily responsible for oversight of the grant. The Cash Management area
tracks federal expenditures by grant and ensures cash is drawn to fund those expenditures in
accordance with the Cash Management Act of 1990. The Cost Accounting area oversees the
Department's cost allocation system as well as the methodologies and ensures allocable costs are
properly distributed on a cost/benefit basis. The Federal Reporting area is responsible for
fulfilling all of the various Federal-reporting requirements.
Colorado’ s Proposal for a National Emergency Grant, 44
Participant and financial tracking/reporting
The MIS unit maintains both the statewide WIA management information system and the
internal automated network. This unit generates reports for monitoring purposes on an ongoing
basis, and to meet federal MIS reporting requirements. The unit provides technical assistance and
training to the Workforce Region and subcontractor. The MIS unit also monitors follow- up and
customer satisfaction surveys results, which are conducted by the state.
CDLE’s MIS will support the integration, data comparisons and linking across various programs.
Program participant enrollment, activity, and outcome data will be compiled quarterly through
Colorado’s statewide JobLink database, which all Workforce Regions utilize. The state will
continue to work with staff from local Workforce Regions to ensure participant data is reported
accurately in the format required by US DOL and will be responsible for calculation of
performance levels on a quarterly basis. In addition, the local Workforce Regions will provide a
quarterly narrative report to the CDLE.
CDLE will require Workforce Regions to ensure that financial reporting is maintained and
reported in a standardized format as required by US DOL. The state has developed and is
operating a financial and grant management system that is capable of meeting both the federal
and state fiscal requirements in accordance with general accepted governmental accounting
procedures. These functions include grant administration, cash management and reporting. The
state fiscal and grant management systems comply with the Uniform Administrative
Requirements for States and Local Governments, the Single Audit Act, Office of Management
and Budget Circulars, Nondiscrimination and Equal Opportunity Regulations and other relevant
federal and state laws and policies.
The Fiscal unit maintains the statewide WIA fiscal system. The unit inputs monthly contractor-
expense reports and provides reports for state- level monitoring requirements. The unit processes
weekly cash payments to contractors and state- level vendors as well as monthly payroll to state-
Colorado’ s Proposal for a National Emergency Grant, 45
level employees. The fiscal unit is also responsible for issuing policy guidance and providing
technical assistance and training on fiscal issues.
Operating costs include a pro rata share of state level costs to include: audit, rent utilities,
telephone, supplies and postage. The portion of these costs allocated to the grant in this
projection is commensurate with the amount of indirect personnel costs.
Oversight/project site visits
The state will provide annual monitoring for compliance with federal requirements, as
promulgated in circulars or rules of the Office of Management and Budget and as mandated by
WIA Section 184(a)(4). The monitoring component will ensure substantial compliance with the
requirements of WIA, other administrative circulars and the grant award letter. Each of the local
Workforce Regions will be monitored on-site no less than once annually as required by federal
Oversight will be ongoing throughout this grant period and will include not only on-site review,
but review of monthly and quarterly participant and expe nditure reports. State Field
Representatives will work directly with their supervisor to develop a master schedule for all on-
site visits to both the Local Workforce Board and their subcontractors. A grantee questionnaire,
desk review and on-site checklist have been developed for the National Emergency Grant and
will be used during on-site visits to the Local Workforce Board administrative offices as well as
contracted service providers. The state WIA Compliance Monitoring Policy Guidance letter will
be the foundation for compliance assurance issues relating to this grant. A Workplan outlining a
timetable for completing tasks can be found in the Attachments.
Colorado’ s Proposal for a National Emergency Grant, 46