California’s Labor Code, in Division 3, Chapter 4, Article 5 establishes the Apprenticeship Innovation Funding Program. Labor Code Section 3110 requires this law to be implemented only when sufficient appropriated funds are provided in the budget.
The Division of Industrial Relations (DIR) was required to establish and administer the Apprenticeship Innovation Funding Program to provide grants, reimbursements, or funding through other appropriate funding mechanisms to an apprenticeship program for the support of apprenticeship programs or for the training of apprentices.
An apprenticeship program or eligible entity may submit an application to the DIR to request funds. An “eligible entity” is an entity that has registered apprentices with the DIR Funding provided to these entities can be passed on to whichever entity is performing eligible activities pursuant to the funding.
Any entity receiving funding is subject to evaluation by the DIR. If the entity is found to have violated any provisions, those violations are deemed imputed to the associated apprenticeship program, and the DIR may take any appropriate action against that apprenticeship program. The DIR must require that recipients of apprenticeship innovation funding demonstrate a commitment to high road principles and are required to evaluate the performance of recipients based on those principles.
Section 3111 authorizes the DIR to provide apprenticeship innovation funding support funds for the organizing, running, and sustaining of, an apprenticeship program that is not within the jurisdiction of the council. For each apprentice that is actively registered with the DIR for each 12-month period, an apprenticeship program or eligible entity is eligible to receive support funds in an amount determined by the DIR.
Section 3111.1 requires eligible activities for support funds to include requirements such as the following:
- Employer outreach, support, onboarding, and management.
- Recruiting, matching, and placing individuals into apprenticeships.
- Support services for an apprentice, such as interview coaching, conflict resolution, and life crisis management.
- Retention initiatives to reduce the turnover rate of apprentices.
- Tracking and reporting the apprentices to the division.
- Troubleshooting and adjudicating stakeholders in a joint apprenticeship committee, a unilateral management apprenticeship committee, or a unilateral labor apprenticeship committee.
- Project management and stakeholder management.
Section 3112 allows the DIR to provide apprenticeship innovation funding training funds either directly to public educational institutions for the training of apprentices, provided that an apprenticeship program is providing the training pursuant to a contract with the public educational institution, or to apprenticeship programs. The reimbursement rate is determined by statute.
Section 3112.1 requires eligible activities for apprenticeship innovation funding training funds to including requirements such as the following:
- Development of courses.
- Classroom instruction.
- Equipment specifically for classroom training.
- Instructor salaries.
- Curriculum design.
- Administration of transitioning courses to for-credit college course.
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