Green jobs certification program bill advances

TRENTON – The Senate Education Committee released bill S1648/A1098, which gives county colleges and vocational education schools the ability to partner with companies to develop green job certification programs.

The schools would create training programs and identify areas where more skills need to be taught to create a healthy workforce in the green jobs industry.

Green jobs are those that focus on creating energy-efficient buildings, environmentally-friendly cars, retrofitting infrastructure to improve the environment, create renewable electric power, and other sustainable measures.

Individuals who complete the program would receive a certificate from the college or school where they enrolled.

Judy Savage, executive director of the New Jersey Council of County Vocational-Technical Schools, said she hopes to work with the committee to provide more feedback.

“We hope to be able to come back to you in a few months with some language that will support our efforts to create a pipeline of individuals with the academic and technical knowledge to address a wide range of workforce needs in the green economy, from technicians to construction managers to engineers,” she said in a statement.

Committee chairwoman Teresa Ruiz, (D-29) of Newark, said she would look forward to working with her.