CONSTRUCTION-AGGREGATE SECTOR STRATEGY

In response to industry demand, Lane Workforce Partnership was asked to convene and facilitate the Lane County Construction-Aggregate Workgroup.  This workgroup was formed in January 2016 with the overall goals:

  • Create industry awareness for younger workers.
  • Identify/problem solve workforce issues.
  • Discuss how to make connections with Lane County Middle/High Schools, Lane Community College (LCC), and collaborations with local workforce agencies.

The Lane County Construction-Aggregate Workgroup last met on January 17, 2018.  Agenda items included:

  • Organization for 2018 Lane County High and Middle School Construction-Aggregate presentations.
  • Presentation by Connected Lane County/Elevate Lane County of information related to Construction-Aggregate.
  • BOLI/Apprenticeship issues – follow up and next steps.

2018 Construction-Aggregate Projects Summary:

  • During the months of February – March 2018, 17 local construction-aggregate employers and training programs presented to approximately 110 students and parents at nine Lane County schools.  Several sessions were expanded to include middle school students.  Two sessions were scheduled in the evening to allow parents to attend.  The purpose of these presentations is to introduce, inform, promote, and create awareness of construction-aggregate industry opportunities.
  • March 2018:  KEZI began running a public awareness media campaign called Skilled to Work to promote trade opportunities for the construction, aggregate, manufacturing, and utility industries.  The target audience for this campaign will be eligible workers of all ages, parents, and educators.
  • April 4 and April 5, 2018:  Lane County Sand and Gravel Tour.  Because of student interest, this year’s tour was expanded to two days so that 120 students from nine high schools could participate.  Delta Sand and Gravel and Knife River hosted.  Additional participating companies were:  Wildish Sand and Gravel and Eugene Sand and Gravel.  Interested students from the tour were encouraged to attend the April 12th Lane County High School Job Fair to discuss sand and gravel employment opportunities.

Why focus on Construction-Aggregate?  Here’s why…

The Construction-Aggregate sector employs over 7,115 people in Lane County and is expected to grow faster than the overall economy at 24% between 2017 and 2027 for 1,724 new jobs, compared to 11% for all industries.  In addition, there are expected to be 8,368 replacement openings for a total of 10,092 openings over the ten-year period.  With above average growth, employment in the sector reaches pre-recession levels, which peaked in 2007 at 8,380, towards the end of the forecast period. Annual average wages in construction and aggregate are higher than the overall average for all industries at $51,979 compared to $42,644.  In 2017, Lane County’s total payroll in construction and aggregate was $396,232,801, the fourth highest county in the state.  Even though wages are higher on average than for all industries, most occupations in construction and aggregate require only a high school diploma or less for the typical entry level position.

For additional Lane County Construction-Aggregate Workgroup information, please connect with Lyle Lang (lylel@laneworkforce.org).