Policy Updates

Effective July 10, 2023

Special Announcement

Important update regarding the Workforce Training Fund Program (WTFP) and its two offerings, the General and Express Programs:

After careful evaluation and consideration, we have adjusted our grantmaking policies, effective with all applications submitted on or after July 10, 2023:

  1. The maximum amount of a General Program grant will decrease from $250,000 to $200,000 per two-year grant award. This is in addition to the re-implementation of the one-year waiting period between General Program grants.
  2. The maximum amount of Express Program reimbursement that a business may receive for approved training courses will decrease from $30,000 to $20,000 per calendar year.
  3. Employers with over 100 Massachusetts employees will no longer be eligible to receive Express Program grants and will be encouraged to submit General Program applications.
  4. Employers are limited to participating in either the Express or General Program at one time.
 
Note: Applications received prior to July 10, 2023, will be considered for previous grant limits ($250,000 / $30,000).
 
These changes are called for due to continued increases in participation in Workforce Training Fund Programs. Without these additional limitations, demand for WTFP grants is forecast to exceed available funds in FY24 (July 2023 – June 2024). The total funding available for grants has increased slightly year-over-year. We expect to award more than $40 Million in training grants during FY24, the most in the WTFP history. But growth in participation in WTFP programs since the Covid-19 pandemic is outpacing available funds. Therefore, to ensure funds are available when needed, and applications can be accepted on a rolling basis throughout the year, the above policies have been adopted.
 
These decisions were not taken lightly. By making these adjustments, we can serve more businesses and train more workers. We value your partnership and appreciate your understanding as we work to navigate these changes together. We are confident that these revised policies will ensure the WTFP’s sustainability in the years ahead.
 
We understand this reduction may raise concerns and questions, and we would like to address them below. 

FAQs

The decision to reduce the total amount a business can receive in General Program grants and Express Program reimbursements per calendar year was made to ensure the sustainability and longevity of the Workforce Training Fund. The rising demand for Workforce Training Fund grants outstrips the projected supply of funds available. By reducing award amounts, we can maintain the availability of Workforce Training Fund grant funds to a larger number of eligible Massachusetts businesses while accommodating a surge in requests for grant funding.

The Workforce Training Fund is experiencing a surge in demand that outstrips the projected supply of funds available. By requiring businesses to complete one grant before starting another in a separate program, we can ensure that committed grant funds are actively being used by a business while allowing other eligible businesses to apply for and receive new grants.

Note: this policy change applies only to new General and Express Program applications submitted on or after July 10, 2023. If you have General or Express Program contracts open at the same time from before that date prior to July 10, you are permitted to finish your training.

This means that effective July 10, 2023:

a. Eligible Massachusetts businesses cannot have a General Program grant in progress and receive a new Express Program grant(s) without first completing training and closing out their active General Program grant.

b. Eligible Massachusetts businesses cannot have an active Express Program grant(s) in progress and receive a new General Program grant without first completing training and closing out any active Express grants.

No. The policy change only applies to new Express or General Program applications submitted on or after July 10, 2023. If you have an active grant in both programs issued before July 10, 2023, the award amounts will remain intact until you complete training or close out the contract.

No. All grants approved and executed before July 10, 2023, will be honored in full at the amounts stated in their contracts, provided that all program guidelines are followed for the duration of the grant period.

Yes. If you are a business with over 100 MA employees and have an active Express service agreement that was applied for and approved before July 10, 2023, then it will be honored in full.

Please keep in mind that Keep in mind that businesses with over 100 MA employees are encouraged to apply for the General Program. Eligible businesses can receive up to $200,000 for two-year grants for customized training projects.

You are eligible to apply for the Express Program, if the total number of W-2 employees working in Massachusetts at the time moment you apply is at or below 100. For example, if you apply when your company currently has 300 Massachusetts employees, your application will be closed, and you will be encouraged to apply for a General Program grant instead.

As a kind reminder, Keep in mind that businesses with over 100 MA employees are encouraged to apply for the General Program. Eligible businesses of any size can receive up to $200,000 for two-year grants for customized training projects.

Thank you for your ongoing participation in the Workforce Training Fund Program. Our team is available to address any questions regarding these adjustments. We value your partnership and appreciate your understanding as we work to navigate these changes together. We are confident that these revised policies will ensure the WTFP’s sustainability in the years ahead.

Gratefully, 
 
The Workforce Training Fund Team 

Commonwealth Corporation is a quasi-public agency that was established in 1996 under the Executive Office of Labor and Workforce Development. 


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