Trenton, NJ – New Jersey is offering a $500 incentive to unemployed people who go back to work and receive on-the-job training in businesses with 100 or fewer employees, Gov. Phil Murphy said Monday.
The incentive, called the Return and Earn Program, will be financed with $10 million of federal COVID-19 funds.
The Democratic governor says the new program will use the already existing job-training infrastructure to provide wage reimbursement to employers. Employers who hire workers with “skill gaps” may also receive 50% of wages reimbursed during the training period under the program.
Employer wage subsidy will be capped at $10,000.
The program is supported by lawmakers as well as business groups. Tom Bracken, president and CEO of the New Jersey Chamber of Commerce, said the program will provide on-the-job training as well as an incentive for workers to return to jobs.
John Harmon Sr., president and CEO of the African American Chamber of Commerce in New Jersey, said: “This is a good use of funds to help address the labor shortage that has adversely affected our small businesses during the pandemic. “
Murphy said the $500 incentive would be paid to eligible workers in their first paycheck.