More money to help former NUMMI workers

It’s pretty clear that if you’re going to get laid off, it’s better to have worked at a major auto plant.

FREMONT – Rep. Pete Stark (D-CA) and Secretary of Labor Hilda Solis today announced a National Emergency Grant of $19 million from the Department of Labor to help workers who recently lost their jobs with the closure of the New United Motor Manufacturing, Inc. (NUMMI) plant.  The announcement came following a tour of the NUMMI Re-Employment Center in Fremont.

“This funding will give NUMMI workers opportunities for education and job retraining to help get them back to work,” said Rep. Stark. “As the East Bay attracts green manufacturing jobs, this grant will help our skilled workforce stay ready for these opportunities.  This grant continues significant federal assistance that has also included a grant to the city of Fremont and Trade Adjustment Assistance for thousands of workers.”

The grant will provide up to $19,042,012 in funding to the California Employment Development Department, with $11,082,639 released immediately.  The money will allow local Workforce Investment Boards to provide services that include career guidance, job search skills training, resume review, skills assessment and labor market information.

Matt Artz


  1. I find it nearly criminal that the NUMMI workforce is receiving federal benefits that are not accessible by the general unemployed. Former NUMMI team members are not more or less valuable than somebody laid off by Boston Sci, for example, or any other company in this region who has shed employees over the past couple years.

    The day when politicians and the public shake their love affair with their sacred auto assembler couldn’t come soon enough. They bolt s___to a chassis for Christ’s sake. This is not God’s work.

    /End Rant

  2. “The grant will provide up to $19,042,012…for career guidance, job search skills training, resume review, skills assessment and labor market information”

    What a waste of $19 million; just open up the paper and you can tell for yourself THERE ARE NO JOBS!

  3. The federal government didn’t earn that $19m by the way. They are borrowing every single dime. What kind of return do you think the federal government is going to get from borrowing $19m and paying interest?

    Perhaps one of the boards Obamaphiles could choreograph a nice little cheer for this move. Make it modest, though. $20m in welfare is considered a small pittance by this administration.

  4. Hear’s a modest little cheer: The total amount is not that big, it is $4200 a head for each job lost at the NUMMI, only about 3 months unemployment I think.

    I do wonder how effective it would be though… $4200 would pay for a real training class, like an IT certification or getting upgraded training on a CNC machine. To me, real training would be more useful than extended career counseling.

    By the way, more jobs are on Craigslist than in the paper these days anyhow (Sorry Matt!) There is lots of competition, but there are jobs worth going after.

  5. Reading the latest article, the money is going to cover technical training as well as “services”, that makes more sense to me. The quote “job search skills training” made it sound like being taught to use Craigslist.

  6. Marty: This “gesture” may actually help people get new jobs. Can we afford to have these people not get training?

  7. These people received $20-50K in severance pay from Toyota. As unemployed, they are far more fortunate than the 450,000 Americans who applied for unemployment last month.

    Again, this is a very expensive gesture by an administration who feels the heat for a congressman who is up for reelection.

    $4200 would pay for a real training

    That’s $4,200 per vote, kiddo.

    It took America 5 years to realize Bush was not working in the interests of the greater country. Thankfully Obama has achieved the same milestone in 1 year.

  8. That’s right – conservatives know that we shouldn’t be doing anything for the NUMMI workers or anyone else.

    Ronald Reagan said, “The basis of conservatism is a desire for less government interference, less centralized authority and more individual freedom.”

    Glenn Beck says, “Being conservative means having personal responsibility.”

    Conservatives recognize that with individual freedom comes individual responsibility. Freedom demands that we all rise or fall purely on our own merits. Government fosters dependency and stifles individual achievement – and thus, weakens society as a whole. Nobody gets a hand, no matter the circumstances (except for wars for profit and big business and tax cuts for the rich).

    Years ago, Republicans used to contribute to governing, back before they let the teeth grinders take over and became the Leave Me Alone party, intent on proving that government is evil and inherently inept.

    As should be abundantly clear by now, today’s GOP approaches their responsibilities and substantive discourse with the maturity of a child. A young, slow child. A medicated, young, slow child who’s easily distracted and hasn’t learned social norms about honesty.

    It looks like there will always be wingnuts. The best antidote to their garbage is elegant, intelligent governance, but they’ve done such damage to America in the past decade that it could take a century of saints to fix.

  9. I guess I’m a right wing nut because I don’t understand why the NUMMI employees deserve any bail out. When I was laid off by one of the largest companies here in Fremont ( Lam ) I did not receive any government money other than unemployment and I had to go out and find my new job on my own. I did not make nearly what they made and still had a car payment,student loan payment and a mortage…never missed a payment….I did have savings as I did not piss away my take home pay.

    I was not an engineer I was a material handler, found another job at KLA-Tencor and moved on.If I had received the severance package they did I could have lived for 2 years off of it.

    But I’m just right wing nut what do I know

    Let the attacks on me begin

  10. Predictably Irv, you confuse relevant and timely criticism of seriously flawed policy with not only a call for conservatism, but call for far-right wing conservatism. Arguing to the fringe, which is exactly where you hang your hat.

    Many exist between you and Glen Beck.

    What you’ll find out in November is that your country (and state) are not nearly as partisan-driven as yourself – they can think for themselves, and know when their leaders are giving them a bad deal. They did in 2005, and they certainly do today.

    Elections aside, a lecture from you is a bit curious, as it should be abundantly clear to proud liberals living in the Bay Area and the greater bankrupt state of California that your method of governance has produced not only a result that is the laughing stock of the entire world, but a complete structural catastrophe.

    It may just take a century of fiscal conservatives to fix.

  11. So Irvington, how much IS enough? $4200? $42,000? HOW MUCH MONEY SHOULD BE AWARDED TO PEOPLE SIMPLY BECAUSE THEIR UNION SUPPORTS OBAMA AND STARK? Good God man, this is money WE DON’T HAVE! It’s called REDISTRIBUTION OF WEALTH, pure and simple. Which I believe is a Marxist term if I’m not mistaken….

  12. I think some of you are under the impression Irvington is a conservative. Read his post again, he shows his true colors…

  13. While y’all get your shorts bunched up over $19M, we, according to the Pentagon, spent $6.7 BILLION in Afghanistan and $5.5 BILLION in Iraq for the month of February alone. Mmmm, if memory serves me it was a supposedly fiscally conservative guvment who got us into this mess. It may take a century to undo what Dubya started.

  14. Irv’s not a conservative. He’s throwback who forges his politics on a 30 year old grudge and a delusion that all those who dare to disagree with Obama are Beck-heads.

  15. Fiscal conservatives.

    You mean like the one that can’t figure out how to win a CA gubernatorial race without OUT-SPENDING every previous candidate by O R D E R S of M A G N I T U D E !!!!

    LOL ! ! !

    Excellent example of “Ignore what I do because I speak so loudly.”

  16. #15 again forging their opinion on a grudge. Dubya didn’t start Afghanistan, if you recall.

    We can tit for tat all night long. I can say that the $13 Trillion Obama signed over to the top 1% is nothing compared to a $6.7B war effort.

    But, at the end of the day $19M is still a tremendous amount of money.

  17. #17 I think the tenants of fiscal conservatism dictate that you have restraint with other people’s money.

    Perhaps an Obamaphile can chime in with their opinions on campaign spending, breaking spending records and all that.

  18. #’s1,3,7,9,12,16,18,&19 – never met a topic he couldn’t find fault with.

  19. #19 – any common definition of *conservatism* has absolutely NOTHING to do with where the resource originates – Conservativsm is “purposefully low” – – e.g., the obtaining of a result for something less than . .

    But you knew that – right ?

    Please – tell me you knew that already

    – didn’t you ?

    Please – tell me you completed an elementary school education and you were taught the meaning of conservatism, long ago – and you’ve just. .. . forgotten (?)

    You and Meg.

  20. Bbox, If I could make any sense out of your community college-grade pseudo-intellectualism I’d respond directly, but as it happens every once in a while, I have no idea what your point is.

    I am by no means a cheerleader for Whitman, but I have no issue whatsover with her campaign funding. The lady hasn’t been sitting by her mansion fireplace tossing stacks of $100 bills into the fire. $85M, much of it her own money has been circulated into the CA economy by way of campaign staff, advertising, media production, etc, etc. Probably 10% ($8.5M of that has been funneled into the CA general fund from income taxes alone. This is not a bad thing.

    Anyway, your somewhat petty complaints against Whitman (campaign finance over policy) is a bit strange, since her opponent, Gerry Brown is the Godfather of CA public employee unions, a facet of our government of which you’ve been very much against.

    Are you yet another textbook case of a brainwashed California Democrat voting against their best interests?

  21. Marty, now it seems as if what you are a fan of is obscenely rich people. I suppose that fits with your Ronald Reagan idolatry – you’re hoping for some personal trickle down.

  22. Charlotte, Reaganite or Obamaphile, we’re all fans of trickle down economics now.

    I am sure obscene amounts of money will start flowing into Brown’s coffers soon enough. I guess it’s a matter of who you want to “own” the candidate. Meg will be her own biggest contributor, I suspect the unions will be Gerry Brown’s. But big money is not ideal in any sense. I wish it were different.

    There’s a cozy little conclusion to this thread for me, as it’s come full circle: No doubt about it, Meg Whitman bought the Republican nomination with her own money. But, Obama and Stark are buying votes with China’s money. I’ll let you decide which is better for America. That’s pretty much all I have to say.

  23. Nice “U” turn in a rather limp attempt to rationalize your position, Marty !

    First – you argue a definition of “conservatism” which you want to suggest somehow has something to do with resource ownership (your post #19).

    Choosing to overlook that minor mis-step – you need a new strategy and now claim “ignorance” of the discussion –

    Hmmm – looking over the “Marty Playbook” – it seems like timing is ripe to exit this thread and get busy somewhere else fanning the flames of discourse for discourse’ sake.

    Who benefits ?

  24. Tom, I’d like to respond to you since you’ve actually been through the wringer: I’m glad you landed on your feet, partly because we live in a place with a lot of jobs even in a downturn. My own sister is under-employed right now, earning a pittance while she figures out how to get back into her field. She’s not getting any government help either.

    The NUMMI folks got the extra deal because there were so many of them at once, it is an economic as well as a political issue (yes, I realize politics is involved). When there is a big lay-off in the Valley, you will sometimes hear about deals like this for electronics workers, though most companies try to avoid such large reductions all at once. Once back in the 80’s my company had a big lay-off, they had to give 3 months notice and provided packages to satisfy the labor laws. Most companies try to stay under the threshold.

    I think this type of help should be more widely available, it is an investment not just a give-away. There are risks, a lot of trade schools are over-promoting the opportunities that they provide. Even so, investing in skills directly stimulates the economy and has long term benefits for individuals and for the community. Much better than spending it on Iraq for instance.

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