WICHITA, Kan. — Federal funds to help retrain Wichita-area workers who have been laid off have fallen by nearly $870,000 in the last two years.

The funding cut comes as the local aircraft industry is looking to hire more skilled workers.

The Wichita Eagle reports that the Workforce Alliance of South Central Kansas primarily uses the federal funding to help low-income workers or those displaced by job loss pay for technical training in aircraft jobs.

The funding is tied to a formula that awards money based on a state’s unemployment, poverty rates and population growth. Workforce Alliance CEO Keith Lawing says Kansas’ declining unemployment and sluggish population growth has led to less job training money.

Lawing says his group has been able to temporarily offset the decline with two grants totaling $680,000.

Information from: The Wichita (Kan.) Eagle, http://www.kansas.com

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