Tags: Education | Trump Administration | coal | miners | training | grant | bankruptcy

Feds Gives Ky. $3.72M to Retrain Coal Miners

a truck carries coal from a mine
(Mead Gruver/AP)

By    |   Monday, 23 September 2019 05:13 PM

Hundreds of coal miners in Kentucky left jobless from when Blackjewel LLC filed for bankruptcy in July will receive retraining and employment assistance because of $3.72 million from the U.S. Education Department.

The aid, sought by Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., will be provided to the National Dislocated Worker Grant and the Eastern Kentucky Concentrated Employment Program (EKCEP).

The programs finance training and job programs in 23 Eastern Kentucky counties, including Harlan County, the Lexington Herald-Leader reports.

"From the beginning I've been in constant communication with the U.S. Department of Labor, urging them to do everything possible to help dislocated mine workers in Harlan," McConnell told the newspaper Monday, adding the dollars would "provide assistance for Kentucky to help miners and their families get back on their feet."

Blackjewel, which operated mines in four states, abruptly filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection in July after being strapped for cash since as early as 2013.

Miners in Cumberland, Kentucky, blocked a July 29 train carrying more than $1 million in coal to demand pay after Blackjewel gave them checks that bounced.

The company wrote bad checks to 350 miners in Harlan County alone, according to news reports.

According to its bankruptcy filing, Blackjewel owed $500 million to the federal government, Kentucky and two other states, county agencies, and local vendors and companies.

So far, 500 unemployed coal miners have applied for retraining programs through the Kentucky agencies since July, EKCEP's Jeff Whitehead told the Herald-Leader.

The retraining program began in 2012 — and the number of coal miners in the region plunged from 13,600 to 5,900 between 2011 and 2015, according to the report.

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Hundreds of jobless coal miners in Kentucky will receive retraining and employment assistance because of $3.72 million from the U.S. Education Department, Newsmax's Todd Beamon reports.
coal, miners, training, grant, bankruptcy, blackjewel, clean coal, energy
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2019-13-23
Monday, 23 September 2019 05:13 PM
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