St. Albert employers looking to hire and train new full- or part-time workers can apply for grants that will cover a portion of an employee’s annual salary.
“We have kept the improvement from the second intake and, based on the feedback from our Albertan employers, we have increased the flexibility for this final intake,” said Minister of Labour and Immigration Kaycee Madu during a press conference June 2.
On June 3, the Alberta Jobs Now program opened for the third and final intake of applications.
Eligible employers, which include private-sector businesses and non-profit organizations, can apply to receive 25 per cent — up to $25,000 — of a new employee’s salary.
Employers can apply for up to 10 full- or part-time workers.
If the new employee has a disability, an employer can apply to receive 37.5 per cent — up to $37,500 — of the worker’s salary.
“Unfortunately, some Albertans have been through a rough time returning to work, especially those who have been unemployed for six months or more,” said Madu.
In this round of applications, if a new employee has been out of work for 27 consecutive weeks, the province will give employers a grant for $37,500.
“Our economy is changing. And some people want to develop new skills to find a better job. Our recovery is too strong to be leaving people behind who want to work,” he said.
To be eligible for the grant funding, businesses and organizations must use the funding to hire a person that resides in Alberta and who has not worked for the employer within the period of 90 days. The funding must be used for a new or vacant position.
Employers have two options to receive payments. Employers can choose to receive 100 per cent of the grant for new hires after they have been employed for 52 weeks.
The second option is to have half of the grant paid after the employee has been employed for three months and receive the other half of the grant for the worker after 52 weeks.
The rules are different for businesses and organizations which have only been established for less than six months. New businesses will receive 25 per cent of the funding at three months and the rest at 52 weeks.
Altogether the province said they it is providing a total of $370 million on the program, with $90 million being allocated for this third intake. A total of $185 million was provided from the Workforce Development Agreement through the Government of Canada, and $185 million from the province, as reported by The Gazette in August.
The first intake for the program commenced on May 20 to July 23, 2021. The second round of intakes was from Nov. 10 to Dec. 17, 2021. Applications for both the first and second intake closed early due to high demand.
Madu said as of May more than 12,600 Albertans were working in positions approved under Alberta Jobs Now.
The top five industries applying for the grants include the accommodation and food services sector at 21.12 per cent; professional, scientific, and technical services at 11.19 per cent; construction at 9.46 per cent; retail trade at 7.47 per cent; and manufacturing at 6.94 per cent.
Applications for the program can be found at: https://www.alberta.ca/alberta-jobs-now-program.aspx