Federal COVID-19 relief funds have been authorized to the Southcentral Mississippi Works workforce area for the purpose of assisting employers with the cost of hiring and training employees. If your business has been affected by the COVID-19 crisis, and you hire an individual who has been furloughed, unemployed or otherwise displaced, you could be eligible for assistance.
To qualify for assistance, your business must meet one of these criteria:
- A business that has experienced closure due to nonessential designation
- A business that has experienced a business slow down due to supply chain interruption
- A business that has experienced loss due to reduced orders or reduced consumer demand
- A business that has shut down due to COVID-19 outbreak on employer site
- A business required to revise method of production or service provision process
Under the program, you will interview and select your employees just as you would normally. You will get reimbursed up to 75% of the employee’s wage rate after they have worked 320 hours, or eight weeks working full time at 40 hours a week.
The program is not retroactive. You must make application and work with the Win Job Center before hiring the employee.
For more information, call the Vicksburg office at 601-619-2841 or contact Tina Tolar at the CMPDD Workforce Department at 601-321-2162 or email [email protected].
Vicksburg native Jaron Smith launched Run Your Gun Tactical to train firearm users
Vicksburg native Jaron Smith has launched Run Your Gun Tactical, a firearm training and manufacturing company based in Brandon, Mississippi.
Smith is a 2010 graduate of Vicksburg High School where he was known for his intelligence and being a great student.
He started his company in early August, and it has taken off in a good direction with Smith teaching multiple classes on firearm safety.
The company began after an incident at a local church where windows were broken out. The incident prompted the pastor to investigate firearm protection, and Smith stepped in to help by getting certified as a firearms instructor. Run Your Gun Tactical now deals with church security where Smith trains someone in the church to be prepared for incidents such as an active shooter situation.
“I want to build confidence in people while they are handling a firearm,” Smith said. “Safety cannot and will not be compromised.”
Smith and Run Your Gun Tactical are trained to handle any type of firearm but only offers training in handguns and AR-15-style rifles at this time. One of the purposes for the company is getting individuals prepared for concealed carry permits, which are popular in Mississippi. He gives firearm training to individuals 13 years old and up, and training with Run Your Gun Tactical begins with a classroom session before hands-on training.
The company is growing more each week and Smith has major goals for his business. In just a short amount of time, he has held firearm training classes in Tupelo and Greenwood, Mississippi.
By the beginning of next year or sooner, Run Your Gun Tactical will be able to manufacture and sell firearms made by Smith.
“Success can be yours,” Smith said. “Do not be afraid to succeed, and there will be many obstacles you will have to face.”
Farmer Jim’s Pumpkin Patch and Corn Maze open through Oct. 31
Farmer Jim’s Pumpkin Patch and Corn Maze co-owner Lynn Newman says they are thrilled to be open again this year as the Delta Backwater Flood of 2019 prevented them from planting last year.
The business is open to the public from now until Oct. 31 on Fridays from noon to 6 p.m., Saturdays from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. and Sundays from 2 p.m. to 6 p.m.
They are open Tuesday through Thursday by appointment only to groups of 15 or more. Please call 662-907-3359 to schedule an appointment for a group.
Admission is $7 per person for ages 1 year and up and includes access to the corn maze.
Free admission per person with the purchase of a pumpkin valued at $5 or higher.
Best value is the $10 ticket per person for all activities and includes a traditional $5 orange pumpkin.
Night rates for a scheduled group of 15 or more is $10 each. Ask about set up rate for a bonfire.
Check the Facebook page for nighttime activities including the Haunted Maze Oct. 24.
Social distancing is required. If you cannot social distance, they ask that you wear a mask.
Farmer Jim’s Pumpkin Patch and Corn Maze is located on state Highway 16 west of Rolling Fork, Mississippi. For directions, call or visit the farm’s website.
Hinds CC and Continental Tire announce new apprentice programs
Hinds Community College and Continental Tire have signed an agreement to launch two new programs that will support the academic goals and professional development of students who are interested in manufacturing careers.
The Production Apprentice and Mechatronics Apprentice Programs offer paid, on-the-job experience with a global company and industry certifications.
“Continental is proud to partner with Hinds Community College to establish a program that will create a solid foundation for many careers in Mississippi,” said Michael Egner, plant manager of the Continental Plant along Interstate 20 in Clinton, in a statement.
The program will be open to students who are dually enrolled in high school and the college’s Industrial Maintenance and Mechanics program. Initially, the program will be offered to high school juniors and seniors at Clinton High School and Hinds County Career and Technical Center.
The Mechatronics Apprentice Program, a combination of both mechanical and electrical disciplines, is a growing industry within advanced manufacturing. The program will be open to Hinds students who complete the company’s Production Apprentice Program.
“The Hinds Community College team is extremely excited about this partnership,” said Hinds President Dr. Stephen A. Vacik. “It is a great opportunity for students, and we are committed to implementing exceptional programming that allows us to train citizens in central Mississippi to work with a world class company.”
Both programs require students to balance a 2.5 GPA and 32-hour workweek. Participants will receive paid tuition and book fees while in the apprentice programs.
In 2017, Continental and HCC introduced the Maintenance Technician Internship Program.
Four students spent the summer in Mount Vernon, Illinois, working with specialists at Continental’s tire plant. Twelve of the interns were promoted to full-time maintenance technicians at the new plant in Clinton.
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