In December 2009, the Department of Labor awarded approximately $50 million in State LMI Improvement grants (LMI grants) to 24 individual state workforce agencies (SWAs) and 6 consortia of SWAs. Grantees used these LMI grants, which ranged from approximately $750,000 to $4 million, to collect, analyze, and disseminate LMI, and enhance the labor-exchange function in states. Each SWA or consortium was required to form multiple partnerships to help facilitate efforts to improve LMI in the state. Grantees' activities included efforts to understand green jobs, connect workers to jobs, and enhance LMI labor exchange infrastructure for jobs and careers in the energy efficiency and renewable energy industries. Grantees' activities were expected to benefit job seekers, businesses, educational institutions, and the overall economy in their states or regions.
In September 2010, ETA contracted with Mathematica Policy Research (Mathematica) to evaluate the extent to which the State LMI Improvement grant program was achieving its stated purposes. Mathematica was asked to broadly document the activities of all 30 grantees, provide a detailed description of the activities and partnerships of a subset of grantees, and identify grantees' challenges and promising practices. This study includes a summary report of the grantee activities, a final report and three LMI practitioner briefs.
The Final Report of this evaluation provides an in-depth description of the experiences of nine grantees: Alaska Department of Labor and Workforce Development, Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, Department of Labor and Industry, Indiana Department of Workforce Development, Iowa Workforce Development, Maryland Department of Labor Licensing and Regulation, New Jersey Department of Labor and Workforce Development, New Mexico Department of Workforce Solutions, State of Oregon Employment Department, and Vermont Department of Labor. This report presents lessons that may provide useful information for future efforts and complements the Grantee Summary Report. The final report findings include challenges the grantees experienced due to the short grant length, implementation issues, as well as the evolving definition of green jobs. The report also explains how grantees leveraged the LMI grants to enhance organizational capacity, develop a better understanding of the green economy, and disseminate findings to users, ultimately moving LMI forward at state and national levels.
Other reports available in the LMI Improvement Grant Evaluation: