Governor's Workforce Investment Board
Flathead Valley Community College
Minutes, July 16, 2002
Board Members Present: Chair Haley Beaudry,
Vice-Chair Becky Erickson, Leroy Bingham, Cristina Boyle, Caroline
Brown, Webb Brown, Susan Christofferson, Vicki Cocchiarella, Bill
Crismore, Jim Davison, Jerry Driscoll, Ellen Engstedt, George
Erickson, David Gibson, Gail Gray, Lew Grill, Diane Harkins,
Verdell Jackson, Wendy Keating, Dennis Lerum, Joe Mathews, Scott
Mendenhall, John Musgrove, Jon Oldenburg, Chuck Olson, Lyle
Phillips, Diane Ruff, Gary Willis
Board Members Absent: Carol Brooker, Dick
Brown, Bill Case, Dick Crofts, Cary Hegreberg, Jim Hollenback,
Susan Knedler, Linda McCulloch, Byron Roberts, Jeff Rupp, Jim
Guests: Gordy Higgins, Connie Kinsey, Norma
Boetel, Elisa Mitchell, Jodi Smith, Lisa Stith, Virginia Sloan,
Lisa Stith and Jody Smith from Flathead Valley Community College
welcomed everyone and invited all to take a look at the campus and
Flathead Valley. Lisa explained that Jane Karass, President of
Flathead Valley Community College, has addressed the community over
14 times in the last year to provide community awareness and gather
information. A fundraiser recently produced $14,000 for equipment
and facilities for the arts programs. She noted the success of the
Flathead Business and Education Council partnership with the
college and mentioned some of the successful partnerships with new
and incumbent businesses in the area. Jody Smith emphasized
the excitement regarding their partnerships with education and
business. She highlighted two programs: customized training and
Flathead Business and Education Council, noting that last July
through this May almost 900 participants in were enrolled in
customized training. This included partnerships with 15 private
companies and 10 non-profit companies. The training encompassed
everything from conflict management to technical computer skills.
She noted that the Flathead Business and Education Council was
partially responsible for the addition of 13 workstations dedicated
to continuing education at the college. The Flathead Business and
Education Council meets quarterly to look at ways to set up
educational tracks for what businesses need. They are currently
making changes in high school and Flathead Valley Community College
II. Roll Call
Chair Haley Beaudry welcomed everyone and called the meeting to
order at 10:45 AM.
Roll call was taken and a quorum was established.
III. Review of Minutes
The committee approved the April 16, 2002 minutes.
Chair Haley Beaudry invited Gail Gray to speak about the newly
received High Performance Bonus. Gail explained that Montana
was recognized in three of four categories and received 2.2 million
dollars. The successful areas included job entry, success in the
workforce relating to retention, improvement in the numbers
entering from TANF and improvement in placement. She added that she
is particularly appreciative right now due to the massive cuts in
supportive services. She anticipated that most of the funds would
go to supportive services, childcare and the budget deficit.
IV. Office of Economic Opportunity Update
David Gibson, Chief Business Officer, for the Office of Economic
Opportunity explained that one of the problems is that the jobs
that pay in Montana are going down gradually. He added that though
Montana has had 300% growth in the economy, it has not been the
needed kind. If you want to increase wages you have to increase the
employees productivity. This means improving skill levels,
increasing the use of technology and reducing under-employment. One
concern area is that Montana is ranked 36th in the
nation for innovation by a number of surveys and is continuing to
lag behind. He further explained that traded or primary companies
are the ones that drive technology because they demand training and
Dave described the three pieces in economic development as:
Recruit and attract new businesses
Retain and expand existing businesses
Foster entrepreneurship and business startup
Dave stated that resources should be focused on a cluster
strategy: identify existing clusters and focus on growing the
groups, identify the common components and which will be viable in
a global market, work on workforce skill level improvement and
technology. There is a need for a coherent marketing strategy so
the Office of Economic Opportunity has developed a five-year plan
to go after specific industries (supporting existing clusters) and
businesses. They will also work to create an environment that
fosters business startup and a clear organizational structure.
Cluster: Clusters will focus state efforts to fill gaps in
Research & Development: Research & development are
important because companies are attracted by technology. Will
attempt to encourage the Montana University System to do more
research that supports business.
Workforce: Will complete a workforce study, create a state
workforce training fund directed toward incumbent worker training
and constitute a two-year System Task Force to evaluate the
existing two-year education system and possibly make changes.
Business Climate: Will work to improve access to capital,
regulatory and permitting processes, tax structure to eliminate
capital gains and ensure that K-12 education remains competitive.
Will place the Small Business Administration in the Montana
Recruitment: Will attend conferences to recruit businesses.
Dave went on to explain that Montana needs additional funds
without all of the program requirements other than the $139 million
currently being received.
V. EDAG Update
Carol Donaldson gave a PowerPoint presentation explaining what
the Economic Development Action Group. The presentation also
touched on current partnerships between business and education.
Chair Haley Beaudry asked Governor Stevens to say a few
Governor Stevens explained that he feels Montana's people are
industrious and that there is great respect for the quality of
workers in Montana. He feels confident that education will be given
a top priority in Montana during the special session.
VI. Committee Reports
Regulatory Committee Chair, Leroy Bingham explained that the
Workforce Development Programs for Individuals & Programs for
Business document is an attempt to encompass Montana's workforce
development system. The document is in draft form but the committee
wanted to present it to the full board to provide awareness and ask
for input. They will be adding performance measures to the program
profiles. Will present final document at the October full board
meeting. Leroy also reported that the committee is working on
guiding principles for One Stops. One issue they will be tackling
is providing common definitions for "collocation" and "itinerant
services". Desiree is currently collecting information from other
states to help with this task. In the next year the committee
will be looking at the TANF reauthorization and how the tribes have
been able to combine some programs.
Arlene Parisot briefly explained that the Carl D. Perkins funds
are to be used for secondary and post-secondary education and that
the post-secondary portion is a mandatory partner of the Workforce
Leroy concluded by explaining that the committee will also be
considering any possible benefits of completing a unified strategic
At 1:00 pm the full board approved the Regulatory Committee
report as presented by Leroy Bingham.
- Economic Development & Business
Economic Development and Business Retention Committee Chair,
Scott Mendenhall explained that the committee is working on the
labor availability study and designing a state workforce-training
fund. The labor availability study should be complete in
October. This study will be coordinated with industry
clusters. The committee is looking at possible sources of
program funding for workforce training. Scott explained that 45
states have general fund appropriation for these efforts and some
states have multiple funding mechanisms. The committee expects to
make a recommendation by October. One option being discussed is an
income tax increment fund.
Board Chair, Haley Beaudry inquired about what the next step
will be in preparing legislation. Dave explained that the
information should be presented in a compiled - comprehensive way
for someone to carry. The board should draft the legislation.
Senator Vicki Cocchiarella stated that the board should be
proactive and suggested that some "place holder" bills be submitted
to help speed up the process.
The full board approved having Vicki put in 5 draft bill
requests on behalf of the board at 1:13 pm. At 1:15 pm the
board approved the Economic Development and Business Retention
Committee report as presented by Scott Mendenhall.
Accountability Committee Chair, Cristina Boyle thanked Leroy and
the Regulatory Committee for providing the programs document. She
stated that it would be very helpful to her committee. She touched
on the committee tasks and explained that, "Sometimes the
good things don't get out - so the committee will be working on
developing a scorecard."
At 1:20 pm the full board approved the Accountability Committee
report as presented by Cristina Boyle.
VII. Local Board Reports
Bob Henry, Chairman of the Concentrated Employment Program,
reported as follows:
The Montana Job Training Partnership Board held it's annual
planning last month. The plan will be presented when it is approved
by the local boards and made available in October. Bob invited
everyone to attend the local board meetings on October 9-10. He
explained that earlier this year the a designee for the
Concentrated Employment Program accompanied the listening sessions
put on by the Office of Economic Opportunity across the state. With
the information gained, three focus groups were held including 26
employers. The employers were asked to outline the soft-skills most
important to them. In September they will conduct a "train a
trainer" session at Caroll College in an effort to meet the
soft-skills training needs of employers.
Norma Boetel, Chair of the Balance of State, invited board to
meet in conjunction with the local board meetings in October. She
explained that in the recent planning session there were not many
changes made to the strategic long-term plan. As soon as it is
accepted copies will be available. She reported continuing to see
communities and agencies develop One Stops. She explained that
there is still much work left to do, especially in integration. She
added that within the local boards there has been talk of using
business reserve funds for training. As system builders, the local
boards look forward to working with the state board.
Leroy Bingham took a moment to thank Governor Martz and the
Western Governor's Association for their work on Education and
Workforce Development Policy.
VIII. Other Business
George Erickson asked if anyone knew anything about a "Unified
State Plan". Arlene Parisot and Wendy Keating explained that it is
a state plan that includes many partners and that the benefits of
doing one before looked at currently.
Verdell Jackson explained that some states have petitioned the
Federal Department of Education for more freedom in how to use
their education funds and asked the board to consider this as a
IX. Montana Child Care Resource & Referral
Janet Bush, Executive Director of the Montana
Child Care Resource & Referral Network, provided an overview of
the system and how it intersects with the workforce development
X. Public Comment
Chair Haley Beaudry adjourned the meeting at 2:20 pm.
The next board meeting will be held October 15, 2002 in