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Bill Calls on USU Extension to Create Jobs in Rural Utah Counties

Herald Journal Saturday, Feb. 10, 2018

A Utah lawmaker has introduced a bill that would create a pilot Utah State University Extension program to help people in rural communities find remote employment. Rep. Michael Noel, R-Kanab, sponsored HB 327, “Rural Online Initiative,” which was numbered and distributed last week. It now stands before the House Natural Resources, Agriculture and Environment Committee. ... HB 327 proposes a nearly $2 million appropriation for USU Extension to create a pilot program that helps people in rural areas gain employment or find freelance opportunities online so they don’t have to relocate. ... USU Extension would fulfill the mission of the initiative by providing training modules, scholarships and one-on-one coaching to adults and high school students. ... By 2020, USU would be required to report to a legislative committee and tell lawmakers the number of individuals who receive training through the pilot program and whether there is a reduction in the unemployment rate. Ken White, vice president of USU Extension and dean of the College of Agriculture and Applied Sciences, said this program is “perfect for USU Extension.”

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