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Gianforte announces nearly $2M to train displaced Western Montana lumber workers

The funding is coming from a U.S. Department of Labor grant that helps workers who have lost their jobs to find new work
Pyramid Mountain Lumber Last Logs
Posted at 8:52 AM, Jul 09, 2024

HELENA — Nearly $2 million will be used to help retrain and support workers impacted by a pair of wood products industry closures in Western Montana.

Gov. Greg Gianforte announced on Monday, July 8 that the money will be used to assist workers at the Roseburg Forest Products in Missoula and Pyramid Mountain Lumber in Seeley Lake.

Roseburg closed on May 22, with 150 people losing their jobs while Pyramid is in the process of winding down operations in Seeley Lake.

Gov. Gianforte and the Montana Department of Labor & Industry (DLI) announced the money is coming from a U.S. Department of Labor grant that helps workers who have lost their jobs to find new work.

Roseburg Missoula
Roseburg Forest Products announced on March 20, 2024, that it was closing its Missoula plant.

The DLI will work with local and state organizations to set up a plan that “that identifies the best training opportunities to provide industry-recognized credentials and certifications aligned with high-demand occupations in the region,” a news release states.

“For over a century, the timber industry has been an integral part of the Montana economy, and the loss of these companies is felt across our state. Empowering Montanans through work and opportunity is our work at DLI, and with these funds we will help every impacted worker in the region leverage their Montana work ethic, skill up, and reenter the workforce in high wage, high skilled jobs." - Montana Department of Labor and Industry Commissioner Sarah Swanson.

Missoula, Flathead, Lake, Lincoln, Mineral, Powell, and Sanders counties, as well as to the Blackfeet and Flathead reservations, will be able to access the grant money.

Additional information about the National Dislocated Worker Grants can be found here.