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Job Bureau

May 16, 2019 - 9:52am
posted by Howard B. Owens in Job Bureau, jobs, news, notify.

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There is a skills mismatch between what local employers need and what the available workforce has to offer, said Teresa Van Son, director of the Job Development Bureau in Genesee County, yesterday following her department review with the Ways and Means Committee.

During the meeting, Van Son said a recent job fair was poorly attended by job seekers.

The county's unemployment rate is historically low -- that may not be a surprise but there are still at least 1,300 people listed as unemployed (using the most recent unemployment statistics). Von Son said she believes there are still people with the ability to work who are not looking for work because there aren't jobs available for them. Meanwhile, there are more than 1,000 job openings in Genesee County listed with the Job Bureau.

To address that, Von Son wants to promote more the job-training opportunities available through the bureau.

"One thing we would like to work on is providing people with additional opportunities for training so people in those early skill level jobs can move up and fill some higher level positions and then you've got more room for the emerging workforce," Van Son said.

County-level data for prime-age workers who aren't working or looking for work is hard to come by, but nationally the Bureau of Labor Statistics reports that the labor participation rate in that cohort has returned nearly to 2009 levels after hitting a nadir in 2014. The percentage of prime-age workers, people 25-54, in the labor force (they have jobs or are seeking jobs) was 82.2 percent in April compared to 82.8 percent in April 2009 and 80.8 percent in April 2014.

Recently, Von Son said, there has been an increase in agriculture job openings. There are also jobs available in manufacturing.

There are not many people using job bureau services who have recently been out of the workforce and are returning now, Von Son said. In fact, she can think of only two such clients recently.

"Some folks I think just need opportunities to get training," Von Son said.

December 8, 2017 - 11:46am
posted by Howard B. Owens in job development board, Job Bureau, batava, elba, news.

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CY Farms was named Business of the Year for Genesee County by the GLOW Workforce Development Board at a breakfast this morning at Terry Hills.

The Elba-based company was honored by for its contributions to agriculture, the local business community and employee development. 

Founded in 1951 by Carl Yunker, the farm has grown from 25 cows and a tractor to more than 6,000 acres of crops, 3,800 dairy replacement cattle, and Batavia Turf. CY Farms supports numerous community activities and has hosted job development tours and education programs. The company was also honored because one of its employees is a man with disabilities that the Yunkers worked with to help tailor a job to suit his needs.

"The man is now able to support his family," said Veronica Frost during the presentation of the award to CEO Craig Yunker.

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Christi Lotempio was named Participant of the Year for Genesee County. Frost also presented this award.

Lotempio was laid off by Muller Quaker and when she entered the job bureau she had no college education experience.

She enrolled at Genesee Community College and completed a two-year degree in 18 months with a major in Business. She also studied Accounting. She graduated with a 3.94 GPA despite big changes in her life -- being forced to move because the home she was renting got sold; her uncle died; she was in a car wreck; and she got married.

Now she's employed at Genesee Lumber.

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Lisa Smith presented Samantha Strumph with the Youth Recognition Award. Smith described Samantha as quiet and shy when she first entered the Job Bureau in Batavia. Now, she said, she's bursting with confidence after working at the Byron-Bergen Library.

November 17, 2017 - 12:23pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in Job Bureau, chris collins, news, notify, NY-27.

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Rep. Chris Collins toured the offices of the county's Job Development Bureau this morning to learn more about the work the department does to help people in Genesee County find jobs.

The tour, led by Jay Lazarony, GLOW Workforce Development Board executive director, focused on the Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act (oWOIA), which is a federal program designed to help youth and those with significant barriers to employment find and retain high-quality jobs and careers.

Many of the clients who enter the program have not developed the job skills that help them retain jobs.

Lazarony told the story of one woman who entered the program who had been working as a home health care aide but couldn't stay in a job. The training she received helped her understand what it takes to hold onto a job and also provided her with the skills to become a Certified Nursing Assistant. The program helped her with the expense of travel, shoes, and scrubs. She eventually landed a full-time job at the Genesee County Nursing Home and now she's studying to become a Registered Nurse.

"This is the stuff that we can do with that funding, is give people a great start," Lazarony told Collins.

Collins said he appreciated the insight because so often the programs that pass before congressional members for review are just numbers on a page but the tour helped him see how the program benefits people.

So far in 2017, the center has helped 989 clients, including 141 through WIOA. A total of 137 veterans have been assisted.

There have been 1,322 people placed in jobs in Genesee County through the department's services.

Collins also learned about on-the-job-training programs through 13 participating businesses, occupational training programs, 38 on-site employer-specific job recruitment sessions, and the Summer Youth Employment program that placed 39 high school students in jobs at 23 work sites this summer.

Sometimes the clients of the center need ongoing help, said Scott Gage, director of the bureau.

"We’ll actually stay with them for 12 months after they leave us," Gage said. "We can mediate anything going on with the business, help this person out with issues. We’ve got a lot of community partners we rely on to help us out, social service agencies that will help us out in a number of ways and there’s no funding involved. They provide services and we access those services."

There are currently more than 600 job listings on file with the bureau and most of those are good-paying jobs, Gage said. With local unemployment at about 4 percent, it's proving hard for companies to find skilled workers.

The tight job market is helping to bring some people into the workforce who until now had opted out, Lazarony said. He said two recent clients the bureau has placed in jobs have worked their way up to full-time employment. They were in their mid-20s when they first came in and had never worked any type of job in their lives. They weren't part of the system at all. They just lived at home and didn't work.

There are other long-term unemployed who rely on the state's Safety Net program and they can be hard to assist, Gage said. They're capable of working, but they also have other underlying issues, such as disabilities, and sometimes they've just given up. That's a challenge, Gage said.

Collins observed that "Anybody who wants to get a job can get a job. It may not be at the wage they want, or the hours they want, or the job they want, but they can get a job."

Changes in aid programs initiated by Congress might change some of that, Collins said.

"As we continue down that road you’re going to start to see people lined up out your door," Collins said.

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July 27, 2017 - 8:30am
posted by Maria Pericozzi in Job Bureau, business, news.

July 31 is the last chance for youths, ages 14 to 19, to apply for summer jobs through the Genesee County Career Center in Batavia.

This state-funded program offers 42 positions for youths to work 100 hours, approximately 20 hours a week, for minimum wage.

Lisa Smith, the employment and training counselor, said this is a great opportunity to get job experience.

“This gets them out into the community and building relationships,” Smith said.

Each youth will attend a three-day training, where they learn about how to interview, how to create a resume and cover letter, and how to interact with coworkers.

The Tonawanda Valley Federal Credit Union came to the last training, Smith said.

“They taught them how to balance a checkbook, how to write a check, and how to start saving money,” Smith said.

Once each person is placed, Smith visits once a week to check on the employee and employer.

This program has been around since 1980, serving Genesee County youths. They have worked at places such as the Oakfield-Alabama Central School District, rec programs, the Genesee County Animal Shelter, and public libraries in the area.

For those interested, they can contact Smith at 344-2042, ext. 4237, or by email at [email protected], or stop by the Genesee County Career Center located at 587 E. Main St., Suite 100.

March 23, 2017 - 6:19pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in Job Bureau, schools, education, news.

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The Genesee County Job Development Bureau hosted a job fair today for area high school students. A total of 11 local employers and 13 vendors were on hand along with Job Bureau counselors.

Speakers attended from Genesee Valley Partnership, Genesee Community College, and Empire State College. They discussed vocational or educational goals with students.

There was also staff from the Department of Labor to review student resumes and offer tips. 

(Thanks to Tim McArdle for supplying photos of Le Roy students at the event. We had it on our schedule to cover but couldn't make it because of the accident in Alabama this morning.)

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