Wichita City Council Approves ARPA Funding for Workforce Hiring and Training


WICHITA, Kan. (KWCH) – The Wichita City Council on Tuesday approved millions of dollars to support workforce and small business development. The money is part of $72 million the city received last year under the American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA).

The City Council has allocated $10 million for Workforce Development and Small Business Development Grants. The goal is to help alleviate the economic hardship caused by the pandemic. On Tuesday, city council members approved the 14 organizations that will receive a total of $6.3 million to help rehire or retrain workers needed in areas affected by the pandemic.

The biggest beneficiary is WSU Tech, which supports programs focused on training or retraining for healthcare and manufacturing jobs.

“Wichita is the number one advanced manufacturing city in the entire country and in order for us to retain it, we must continually adapt to market changes. WSU Tech is not only leveraging what we have at the table, but also leveraging its own and other resources to meet some of these critical needs,” said Mayor Brandon Whipple.

About $800,000 went to two startups that experienced pandemic-related delays.

Applications for the remaining $3.6 million in ARPA Workforce and Small Business Development Grants must be submitted by May.

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