US Department of Labor announces $157,430 additional funding for Maine Military Authority employees laid off

Posted June 24, 2014, at 6:43 p.m.

LIMESTONE, Maine — Workers affected by layoffs at the Maine Military Authority are getting some help from the U.S. Department of Labor thanks to $157,430 in supplemental funding, according to information released Tuesday afternoon by the labor department.

The funds are in addition to $869,000 the department has already been awarded through a National Emergency Grant approved for laid off military authority employees.

“The workers who were laid off from the Maine Military Authority continue their efforts to secure new employment,” said Assistant Secretary for Employment and Training Portia Wu in the department’s release. “Access to employment services through Labor Department funding is crucial to helping them succeed in today’s challenging labor market.”

Last August, the company, which refurbishes military vehicles at the former Loring Air Force Base, announced the layoffs of 140 people, a loss of jobs blamed on the drawdown of troops and equipment in Iraq and Afghanistan.

This supplemental funding, awarded to the Maine Department of Labor, will aid in the delivery of re-employment and retraining services to the affected workers.

The news of the funding comes on the heels of last week’s announcement that the Maine Military Authority is in line to receive a $19 million contract to repair buses used by the Massachusetts Bay Transit Authority.

The deal with the Massachusetts Bay Transit Authority is one of two deals officials at the Loring Development Authority hoped it would receive. The second deal would involve railcar manufacturing work with the Chinese company Norinco. A delegation including Gov. Paul LePage and Loring Development Authority President and CEO Carl Flora went to Beijing to meet with Norinco officials.

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