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Alberta and Ottawa sign job grant deal

Alberta Human Services Minister Manmeet Bhullar and Canadian Employment Minister Jason Kenney sign an agreement at Bow Valley College under the Canada Job Grant.

It’s being hailed as a monumental agreement and the hope is it will help Albertans find jobs.

Employment Minister Jason Kenney and Human Services Minister Manmeet Bhullar signed onto the Canadian Job Grant at Bow Valley College Thursday morning in front of a crowd full of professors and educators.

It will provide Canadians with up to $15,000 per person for training costs, such as tuition and training materials.

That includes up to $10,000 in federal contributions (part of $57 million in transfer payments) that Alberta will now have flexibility and discretion over.

Employers will have to contribute one-third of the total costs of training.

Kenney says the program will help protect small and medium-sized businesses from investing large sums of money in their workers, to only have them poached by larger companies.

Bhullar anticipates it will allow companies to fill some of the thousands of job vacancies across the province.

“The purpose of the training is internal empowerment, to expand people’s minds and secondly to make sure they are getting into the workforce,” the Calgary MLA says. “Governments need to do this, they need to re-think the way they offer programs from time to time so that we can ensure the best possible outcomes.”

He adds this particular agreement will allow them to move in a different direction and try something unique.

More information regarding eligibility will be made available in the coming months.