Sen. Guy Palumbo of the 1st Legislative District was recently honored as a Champion of Construction by the Associated General Contractors of Washington.
AGC recognized Palumbo for his work to sponsor and secure passage of legislation to promote workforce training and apprenticeship programs.
“We are grateful for Sen. Palumbo’s leadership in building the workforce for the future,” said AGC government affairs director Jerry VanderWood. “Construction is an industry with well-paying jobs going unfilled due, in part, to a lack of awareness of opportunities, particularly for the non-college bound.”
Palumbo sponsored bill SSB 5713, which created a matching-grant program to bring awareness to careers in industries such as construction that are having a difficult time attracting new workers. The measure passed both houses of the state Legislature and was signed into law by Gov. Jay Inslee earlier this year.
“This is a bill about getting kids into middle-skill jobs,” Palumbo said in support of his bill before the vote on the Senate floor. “As we all know, there are thousands and thousands of open headcount in Seattle in the tech industry, but what is less known is that there are plenty of jobs in the state, especially in construction, that don’t require a post-secondary degree. This has to do with recruitment and outreach specifically to 19-25-year-olds to let them know what are these great family-wage jobs that are available to them, especially in the construction industry. We’ve got a lot of these jobs, especially with the passage of Sound Transit 3, as well as the boom going on right now in Seattle and other parts of the state.”
AGC of Washington is the state’s largest commercial construction trade association, with more than 600 member firms.