The Missouri Chamber of Commerce and Industry praised state senators on the passage of HB 417, legislation that provides an important tool to help build and retain a skilled workforce. The bill, sponsored by Rep. Mike Henderson (R-Bonne Terre), was passed on a vote of 29-4. Sen. Karla Eslinger (R-Wasola) was the handler in the Senate.
HB 417 creates a short-term upskill credential program. This competitive grant program will reimburse employers who help their employees earn short-term certificates or credentials in vital areas for Missouri’s economy. Examples of short-term credentials that would be eligible for reimbursement through the program include manufacturing technology, cybersecurity, blueprint reading, medical assistants, pharmacy technician and medical records coding.
The Missouri Chamber is a strong supporter of this legislation, deeming it critical in supporting Missouri in the global competition for jobs and talent. Now, more than ever, Missouri employers need every tool in their toolbox to attract and retain workers.
“This bill is really about helping to support our economy and the employers that we hear from every week who are struggling to find workers with the right skills,” said Dan Mehan, president and CEO of the Missouri Chamber. “We know we don’t have millions of new residents moving into Missouri every year, so we need to make the most of who we have right now. This is truly a win-win, because when companies invest in the professional development of their employees, those individuals are far more likely to stay at that business.”
HB 417 now goes back to the House, where legislators can either accept the Senate’s version or go to conference to reach a compromise.