Merkley, Wyden Announce $1.5 Million for Manufacturing and Transportation Center in Lebanon

Portland, OR – Oregon’s Senators Jeff Merkley and Ron Wyden announced today that Linn Benton Community College has been awarded $1.5 million from the Economic Development Administration (EDA) to help create the Advanced Transportation and Technology Center in Lebanon. This Center will train technicians in advanced manufacturing as well as in the research, design, building, and operating of high efficiency alternative-fuel vehicles. This investment helps Linn County capitalize on its competitive strengths and boost the region’s economy by creating more jobs in advanced automotive technology.

“With another 200 new clean energy jobs, plus keeping 200 Oregonians in existing jobs, this grant shows that clean energy continues to be a key driver for Oregon’s economy,” said Merkley, who chairs the Green Jobs subcommittee in the Senate. “Last year I was able to travel from the Washington border to the California border in an electric vehicle. A few years ago that type of trip wouldn’t have been possible.  This new center will educate and train a new generation of workers for this expanding industry and help lay the groundwork to keep Oregon at the forefront of clean energy manufacturing and transportation.”    

“This is a great example of a public/private partnership,” said Wyden. “The Advanced Transportation Technology Center at Linn-Benton Community College will meet the need for highly skilled and trained transportation technicians at a time when the demand for alternative fuels and alternative-fueled vehicles is growing. This is the right program at the right time and at the right place.”

EDA’s grants are awarded through a competitive process based upon the applicant’s eligibility, application merit, and the availability of funds.  It is anticipated that this project will retain 200 jobs and create 203 new jobs.