$12M proposed for youth jobs program

BOSTON (WWLP) – The House Budget Committee released their budget proposal Wednesday, which called for more college funding, yet some legislators say there’s not enough for life after graduation.

Higher education pulled in $61 million dollars in the House Ways and Means spending plan, but students say the real struggle is finding jobs. Only $8 million is being proposed for youth employment opportunities, and one lawmaker told 22News he’s working on increasing that number by half.

“Government needs to insert itself here wherever we need to, to make sure people coming out of our higher education system are lined up for the kind of skills training that they need to make sure that they can match up with the open jobs that are out there right now,” said Rep. Tom Conroy (D-Wayland), who serves on the Committee on Labor and Workforce.

Conroy is pushing for $12 million toward a state-funded youth jobs program called YouthWorks. The program helps young people ages 14 to 21 find employment all across Massachusetts.

Legislators have until Friday to file changes to the budget, and the full House will take a vote on the spending plan at the end of the month.

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