Local pipefitters union gets state grant for training

BOARDMAN — With the award of a $150,000 grant to match another $150,000, 40 new future welders will have a chance at learning downhill welding ­— a specific technique of the trade needed in the oil and gas industry.

The Plumbers and Pipefitters Local 396 today received a ceremonial check for the grant awarded to the union by the Ohio Appalachian Development office.

“There are a lot of great programs in our [Mahoning] Valley,” said Butch Taylor, business manager of the Local 396. “For someone who has the interest, but doesn’t have the experience yet, this takes you to the next level to get into the oil and gas industry.”

The grant will cover the hiring of a new instructor to teach specifics of downhill welding and it will fund the materials needed in the program.

Applications for the apprenticeship program are accepted from noon to 4 p.m. every third Wednesday from September to April at the union office located at 493 Bev Road, building 3.

High-school transcripts, a valid driver’s license and a $45 application fee are needed to apply.

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