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Rhode Island Jobs with Shipyards Get Funding

Posted on August 20, 2009

Several Rhode Island jobs will soon be saved as two state shipyards receive federal funding. Visit https://rijobs.com to learn more.

Two Rhode Island shipyards will receive $2.6 million in federal funding through the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act to help create and preserve jobs for ship builders. Blount Boats, Inc. of Warren and Senesco Marine of North Kingstown were each awarded the money under the Small Shipyards Grant Program.

Blount Boats, Inc. will receive $868,186 and Senesco Marine will receive $1,792,347. The Small Shipyards Grant program, created under the ARRA, has so far provided $98 million in funding to more than 70 shipyards throughout the country.

Rep. Patrick Kennedy, who announced the funding earlier this week, told WPRI that the funds are critical to Rhode Island’s shipyards. The state views its shipyards as an integral part of its economy.

Earlier this year, a report from the Rhode Island Marine Trade Association found there were 450 job vacancies in the state’s maritime industry. The report further found the state will need to fill 2,400 more jobs during the next five to 10 years.

Any jobs maintained or added through the funding could help Rhode Island’s faultering economy. During June, the state saw its unemployment rate increase from 12.1 percent to 12.4 percent, which was higher than the national unemployment rate at the time of 9.5 percent.

Rhode Island had a total non-farm employment of 462,900 workers during June, according to the United States Department of Labor Bureau of Labor Statistics. This is down from 463,800 workers during May and a 4.1 percent decrease from last year.

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