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    Since 2007, the Ohio Workforce Coalition has been bringing together leaders from education and training institutions, economic and workforce development organizations, business and industry, labor, and human service providers. The Coalition promotes public policies that build the skills of adult workers, meet employer skill needs, and strengthen the workforce system to ensure opportunity and prosperity for Ohio families.

Lt. Governor, U.S. Department of Energy Asst. Secretary Zoi Announce Nearly 11,700 Homes Weatherized in Ohio under Recovery Act

From Ohio’s Recovery website.

June 8 – Columbus, Ohio – Ohio Lt. Governor Lee Fisher and Cathy Zoi, U.S. Department of Energy Assistant Secretary for Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy, today announced that Ohio has weatherized 11,688 homes under the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act as of April 30, 2010.

Ohio is one of the country’s weatherization leaders and has now weatherized more than 30 percent of their total targeted homes.

“Our home weatherization program assists families to save money on energy costs while immediately putting Ohioans to work in skilled jobs that provide energy conservation services in Ohio’s growing green energy sector,” said Lt. Governor Fisher. “By improving the energy efficiency of thousands of homes in our state, we are steadily working towards Ohio’s goal of reducing our energy consumption and costs.”

The Recovery Act-funded program is also creating jobs locally. According to the state, more than 1,310 workers were employed by state and local weatherization providers during the first three months of the year.

“What we see here today is that states like Ohio are moving forward aggressively with the weatherization program, delivering energy and cost savings for the families who need it most,” said Cathy Zoi, DOE Assistant Secretary for Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy. “This Recovery Act funding is helping to create jobs in local communities while putting America on the path to a clean energy future.”

Under the Recovery Act, Ohio was allocated $266.7 million for the weatherization program. The state previously had access to the first 50 percent of the funding. By weatherizing more than 30 percent of their total estimated homes and meeting a series of aggressive accountability and reporting milestones, Ohio now has access to the full $266.7 million to continue weatherizing homes across the state. Ohio plans to weatherize a total of more than 32,180 homes with their Recovery Act funding. Since February 2009, the state has also weatherized 3,900 additional homes under its annual weatherization program. Together with the Recovery Act funding, the state has now weatherized nearly 15,600 homes since the Recovery Act began.

As part of the weatherization program, states and local organizations are also investing in workforce development and green job training. On Friday, the Department of Energy announced that the Corporation for Ohio Appalachian Development Inc. in Athens, Ohio was selected to receive nearly $1 million in additional funding to develop and expand Ohio’s weatherization training programs. The $1.25 million cost-shared project in Athens will provide improved access to training throughout the state by increasing the capacity of established training locations and decreasing the waiting period for new students. View more information on Athens’ weatherization training award.

Under the weatherization program, states partner with local community action agencies or non-profit organizations to provide whole-home weatherization services. This includes conducting an energy audit in the home to identify the most cost-effective improvements and implementing solutions that range from installing additional insulation and weatherstripping, sealing windows and doors, caulking cracks in the building, and replacing inefficient heating and cooling systems.

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