Mine Closure

A man reacts after a Blackjewel employee said he wasn't able to deposit the cashiers check he received from the company during a public meeting July 2 at the Campbell County Courthouse in Gillette.

CHEYENNE (AP) — Some $1.7 million for job training and other career assistance will continue to be available for workers laid off from Wyoming's coal industry.

Gov. Mark Gordon announced Tuesday the U.S. Department of Labor grant funding set to expire Sept. 30 will still be available to the state through June 2021.

Coal industry workers who've lost their jobs due to layoffs are eligible for tuition assistance and other career help through the Partnerships for Opportunity and Workforce Economic Revitalization, or POWER, grant program.

The grant was first awarded to Wyoming in 2017.

Gordon says the funding comes at a critical time for Wyoming. Some 600 workers have been furloughed since Milton, West Virginia-based Blackjewel filed for bankruptcy July 1 and the company closed two major Wyoming coal mines.

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