CPA & Business Advisory Blog

Ohio Incumbent Workforce Training Voucher Program Launches Round 2 on September 30: $30 Million Available

The Ohio Development Services Agency is launching round two of the Ohio Incumbent Workforce Training Voucher Program. This program will make $30 million in Fiscal Year 2014 available for employers to train their workforce: $27 million in grants will be awarded on a first-come, first-served basis and $3 million will be used for loans.

The Ohio Development Services Agency will reimburse the employer for up to 50 percent of the eligible training costs, up to $4,000 per employee. The maximum amount an employer may qualify for in a fiscal year is $250,000.

Applications for the grant program will be accepted for review on September 30, 2013 at 10 AM, but a pre-application process is available now. Funds are expected to be claimed within hours on September 30, so it is vital to complete the pre-application process prior to that time.

You can find a guide to the pre-application process here.

You can find the answers to some frequently asked questions below.

What is the reimbursement?

Eligible employers could be reimbursed up to 50% of their qualified training costs for qualified employees.   The maximum reimbursement per eligible employee is up to $4,000 with a maximum reimbursement per eligible employer of $250,000.  

When must the training be completed?

Training must take place between August 1, 2013, and June 30, 2014

Who is an eligible employer?

An eligible employer must operate as a for-profit entity in a state-designated targeted industry, with a facility located in Ohio that has been in continuous operation for the 12 months immediately prior to the application submittal. The company’s NAICS code (http://www.naics.com/search.htm) will determine eligibility as to the targeted industry.

Targeted industries are:

  • Advanced Manufacturing
  • Aerospace and Aviation
  • Automotive
  • Back Office
  • BioHealth
  • Corporate Headquarters
  • Energy
  • Financial Services
  • Food Processing
  • Information Technology and Services
  • Logistics
  • Polymers and Chemicals
  • Research and Development

Each employer (identified by Federal Employee Identification Number/FEIN) will be eligible for up to $250,000 in assistance per fiscal year. The Voucher Agreement and any Supplements to the Master Voucher Agreement issued to an employer during the fiscal year, aggregated throughout all of its state of Ohio locations, will be included in this calculation. Please note that only one application per employer (based upon FEIN#) will be accepted per program year. If an employer has multiple sites, those sites must work together to submit one application. An application may include multiple employees and multiple training courses.

Who is an eligible employee?

To be an eligible employee, one must be directly employed by the eligible employer at a facility in Ohio.  In addition, the following requirements must also be met:

  • Be an Ohio resident
  • Be at least 18 years of age
  • Work at least 25 hours a week;
  • Earns an hourly wage of at least 150 percent of the federal minimum wage (which is $10.88 as of January 1, 2012) plus benefits; and
  • Be employed in any of the following business functions for the employer: back office operations, information technology; logistics; production or research and development.

What is considered eligible training?

Eligible training will be technical in nature, will relate to the employee’s current position or future advancement within the company, and must be required by the company. Training activities may include:

  • HR Certification (i.e, PHR, SPHR, GPHR or SHRM) is eligible but limited to HR staff. Individual human resource trainings that are provided to all employees are ineligible (i.e., diversity, ethics, sexual harassment, employee compensation and benefits, FMLA, drug testing, workplace violence, etc.);
  • ICD-10 Training – Training that teaches coding professionals how to become proficient in the ICD-10-CM and ICD-10-PCS coding system is eligible for this program. Eligible trainees include anyone within the company that is required to enter medical codes regardless if the applicant business is for-profit or not. Assessments and refresher courses such as anatomy, physiology, etc. are not eligible for this program;
  • Training for improved process efficiency (e.g. ISO-9000, Six Sigma or Lean Manufacturing);
  • Training from a national, regional or state trade association that offers an independently certified training curriculum and testing;
  • Training that leads to an industry recognized certificate/credential;
  • Training provided in conjunction with the purchase of a new piece of equipment;
  • Training that leads to occupational license;
  • Training to maintain an industry recognized credential;
  • Tuition Reimbursement – The OIWTVP will provide reimbursement funds for tuition courses when the course meets the needs of the applicant company. Therefore, the course must be required by the company and be job related, regardless of the requirement for a degree. Tuition courses which are for the sole purpose of obtaining a bachelor’s or master’s degree are not eligible for this program;
  • Seminars/Workshops/Webinars are eligible but must have a test or exam tied to it in order for it to be eligible for this program; and
  • Upgrade of computer skills (e.g. Excel, Access).

What is considered ineligible training?

Ineligible training activities include (but are not limited to):
 

  • Conference fees;
  • General Equivalency Diploma (GED);
  • Laws, Regulations, and Taxes – Training related to compliance regulations, federal/state taxation laws, international laws, US labor laws, etc;
  • On-Line Resource Libraries or any other resource in which an individual can choose from a number of courses over a period of time;
  • Safety Training – Mandated or regulatory safety training is not eligible. Mandated or regulatory safety training includes but is not limited to blood borne pathogens, control of hazardous materials, lockout/tagout, emergency action plan, emergency response, hazard communications, hearing conservation, safe electrical workplace, all OSHA, and stand-alone safety (including first aid, cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR), emergency medical technician (EMT), etc);
  • Soft Skills (please note that this list is not all inclusive): Adapting to Change, Anger Management, Assessments, Bankruptcy Laws, Basic Math, Branding, Business Policies and Procedures, Business Writing, Coaching/Mentoring, Communication Skills, Conducting Effective Meetings, Constructive Feedback and Criticism, Change Management, Conflict Resolution, Creative & Innovative Ideas, Creative Thinking, Critical Thinking, Customer Service, Dealing with Organizational Change, Decision Making, Drug and Alcohol Education, Drug Testing, Effective Listening, E-mail Skills, Employee Relations, Emotional Intelligence, English as a Second Language, Ergonomics, Facilitation, Foreign Culture and Customs, Forums, Fraud Detection/Prevention, GED Prep Courses, Generational Divide, Habits of Success People, HR Training (i.e., diversity, ethics, sexual harassment, etc.), Informational Meetings, Interpersonal Communication, Interpersonal Skills Development, Interviewing Techniques, Kepner-Tregoe Decision Analysis, Languages, Leadership Courses, Legal Contracts, Legal Purchasing, Listening Skills, Literature, Management Courses, Marketing, Mentoring/Coaching, Monthly Meetings, Motivation, Myers Briggs, Navigating Difficult Conversations, Negotiation Skills, Notary Public, Optimizing Your Work/Life Balance, Orientation/On Boarding, Organizational Behavior, Personal Management/Health, Presentation Skills, Problem Solving, Public Speaking, Reading, Safety, Sales, Strategic Planning, Stress, Summits, Supervisory Courses, Teamwork/Team Building, Telephone Skills, Time Management, Train the Trainer (How to become a more effective trainer) and Workplace Politics
  • Required/Regulatory Training – Training that is required by any other public agency or department is not eligible. These trainings may include but are not limited to EPA, Hazardous Waste, FDA, Workers Comp, OSHA, etc.;
  • Training that is already being reimbursed by another State or Federal training program (e.g. Ohio Workforce Guarantee, National Emergency Grant, etc.);
  • Training to maintain occupational license;
  • Training that leads to professional license (i.e., doctors, lawyers, etc.);
  • Training to maintain a professional license;
  • Travel costs;
  • Truck Driving/CDL training and testing; and
  • Wages of trainees while being trained;

What are eligible training costs?

The employer may request reimbursement for up to 50 percent of the employer’s cost to train an employee and may be used for any of the following purposes:

  • Tuition;
  • Instructor or trainer fees (for in-house trainings);
  • Instructional materials. Please note that these costs must be prorated per employee and will be capped at 25 percent of the cost of training per employee per training. Must be requested and approved in the application to be eligible.

Where can I find additional information on the program?

Additional program information, including post-approval documents and processes, can be found at the following website: https://incumbentworkforce.ohio.gov.

Not sure if you qualify or need help completing the process for the Program?

Please contact Amy Gibson a professional in Skoda Minotti's Tax Planning & Preparation Group at (440) 449-6800.

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