SAUQUOIT, N.Y. (WUTR/WFXV/WPNY) – As many businesses struggle with staffing issues, Oneida County Executive Anthony Picente announced the expansion of the Emerging Worker Recovery Program, which will provide expanded opportunities for student workers and a boost to the local workforce.

“the American Rescue Funding gives us some really unique opportunities and one of the things I announced in the state of the county is to expand that expand the summer youth program to a year-round program for the next year as we have this funding upon us,” said Anthony Picente, Oneida County Executive.

Through this program, many young people have been able to go forward and create a career. The Root Farm is one of the many employers that has utilized this program.

“It’s huge for us because if we get these youth at a great place in their life we hope that it instills may be an opportunity to go on to becoming a vet or something with agriculture and things like that so getting them coming as youth we hope will make for better workers in the future as well,” said Joan Grande, Executive Director of The Root Farm.

Opportunities will be available to students ages 14 through 19 who will be paid minimum wage. Youth will work 20 hours per week during the school year, and between 60 and 100 hours a week in July and August. The County Executive explains that this program expanding will help local businesses that have been struggling with employment shortages.

“We know that people have been having trouble hiring this is another one of our methods to really reach into the workforce and expand that. we need our young people to get into public service we people to get into places like the root provide humanitarian assistance to the people that need it,” said Picente.

Those interested can find application materials on the workforce development page of the Oneida County Website.