'Racine Works' job training program launched with Foxconn in mind

RACINE — A city in southeastern Wisconsin has launched a new job training program aimed at helping residents land employment in a region where opportunities are expected to increase as Foxconn Technology Group begins construction of it $10 billion manufacturing complex.

The Racine Works program was announced Monday, The Journal Times reported . It aims to prepare residents for public and private construction job opportunities, since officials expect the Foxconn complex to spur development in the region.

"It is our job and our commitment today to swing wide the doors of opportunity so that everyone has a shot at the jobs that are coming to the area," said Mayor Cory Mason.

The program is receiving a total of $1.5 million in funding from the city, the Gateway Technical College Foundation, the state's Department of Workforce Development and a transitional jobs program called United Migrant Opportunity Services.

Ray Allen, secretary of the state's Department of Workforce Development, said the state expects the program to have a long-lasting impact on employment in the area.

Racine currently has the highest employment rate in Wisconsin, according to the Workforce Development Department, which tracks 32 cities and villages in the state. Racine's unemployment was 4.1 percent in April, down slightly from 4.7 percent last year.

Foxconn officials expect to employ 13,000 people at its facility, and the project is also expected to spur about 10,000 construction jobs. The Taiwan-based company plans to manufacture advanced liquid crystal display panels for commercial and consumer uses, including televisions.