Governor Northam has announced a new $3 million investment to pilot the Return to Earn Grant Program, which will match payments from eligible small businesses to provide new hires with up to $1,000 to support their transition back into the workforce. While many companies are offering hiring bonuses, the Return to Earn Grant Program will serve businesses with less than 100 employees that may not have the resources to provide this financial support. The initial launch of this program will be funded through Virginia's federal Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act (WIOA) set aside and additional recovery funds may be allocated based on demand. The Bay Consortium Workforce Development Board (LWDA 13) received $171,156.00 based on our Labor Force.
** The initiative will no longer require the match of up to $500 that a qualifying small business would pay directly to a new employee hired after May 31, 2021. Funds will only be reimbursed to businesses for new hires in positions that pay at least $15 per hour and that qualify as W-2 employment, either full - or part-time.**
This funding would be on a reimbursement basis to businesses and the business must enter into a contract with the Bay Consortium Workforce Development Board outlining the hiring bonus and the manner it will be paid along with a reimbursement request.