MassHire NB Presents: “Sales in the New Normal” Free Interactive Virtual Workshop & Upcoming Consortium Program

10.1.2020

 

Staff Contribution

 

As we carefully reopen, adjust to working remotely, and protect the health of our employees, maintaining revenue is essential to keeping their jobs.
 
By now, you probably have a handle on the impact of the pandemic on your business. What should you be doing to ensure you maintain and increase revenue in a predictable and consistent way?
 
Join in on Tuesday October 6 from 10:00-11:30am for a 90 minute workshop that will cover corporate strategy, marketing and sales, sales/account management, and tracking systems.
 
For more information, please click here.
To register, please click here.
 
Want to dive deeper? MassHire NB is also hosting a week-long program where four to six companies will be selected to receive support and work 1:1 to discuss fiscal management, develop a marketing and sales strategy, and a plan for execution. The program is being funded by a consortium grant to help businesses in the region transform their sales revenue!
 
For more information about the consortium program:
MassHire Greater New Bedford 508-979-1504
Donna Ramos, donna@masshiregreaternewbedford.com
Deborah Meggison, deborah@masshiregreaternewbedford.com
Ken Cheo, 781-930-3220 or kcheo@oursalescoach.com

Meeting the moment with innovation in New Bedford

By Steven Froias / Contributing Writer

Beginning in 2010, something remarkable began happening in the City of New Bedford. New business start-ups outpaced the state average here and reached a plateau in 2015 that maintained itself for the next five years. On average, 85-100 businesses of all manner and size opened each year in New Bedford over the course of ten years.

That trend was on track to continue right into 2020 – and then the Covid-19 pandemic hit.

As is the case throughout the country, predicting what happens during the coming year, after an economic shutdown and while the novel coronavirus still seethes while more effective treatment is found or a vaccine is discovered, will be difficult.

However, during the past decade, the New Bedford Economic Development Council (NBEDC) has had a front-row seat witnessing this period of extraordinary growth and innovation in New Bedford. Indeed, it has been the organization’s mission and privilege to help facilitate this profound change of fortunes in the city and for the region by building policy consensus, forging strategic partnerships, providing critical lending opportunities, and promoting long-term growth potential through a variety of initiatives.

During the current combined health and economic crisis, we’re now seeing the result of years of crucial investment in New Bedford’s economic foundation pay off as businesses small and large seize the culture of creativity that engineered this noteworthy period of growth – and employ it to confront the current challenge. They are moving forward building better in ways that offer a promising outlook once Covid-19 is history.

For example, Arthur Glassman of Glassman Automotive Repair and Sales probably didn’t imagine that he would soon be celebrating 30 years of business as a brick and mortar service center in the city while confronting a pandemic. Yet he is tackling the challenge head-on.

He says that during the first weeks of the total economic shutdown in Massachusetts business came to a screeching halt. But Glassman Automotive used the time to “regroup, reorganize, and basically do the things we had always planned to do but had not got around to doing,” he says.

As an essential business, they remained open – and quickly saw business rebound. The way they were conducting that business had changed, however.

They stocked up from vendors after arranging for contact-less delivery. They installed a dropbox for check and key drop-offs and began taking credit card payments over the phone. They launched a policy called “get in and go” whereby customers would just arrive at a parking space, find the keys in their newly-serviced car, and just drive off the lot with it.

“After 30 years, our customers are friends,” Arthur Glassman says. “They’re happy we are looking after their safety.” As a consequence, business, he says, is now good.

Anne Broholm, CEO of AHEAD LLC, had a different challenge to meet. As a leader of a world-recognized manufacturer of quality headwear, apparel and accessories in New Bedford’s Industrial Park, she realized that ensuring her workforce was ready to safely and effectively return to work after the shutdown was the goal AHEAD had to set for itself.

“AHEAD, like most companies, took a significant hit due to COVID-19 and the implications of the shutdown and overall slowing of the economy,” she states. Like Glassman, the initial shutdown provided time to plot a strategy – and AHEAD’s also involved speeding up plans that had already been part of the company’s long-term strategy.

Broholm writes, “One of the best measures we took was to effectively utilize the workshare program through MA unemployment. This allowed us to return more employees total on a 32 vs. 40-hour workweek once we reopened. In my opinion, it is an underutilized but extremely valuable program.”

“We also continue to aggressively cross-train within the company – this was already an ongoing initiative prior to COVID and we have taken it a step further since reopening. We want to ensure that we have work for everyone at all times and the best way to do that is to ensure that our associates have the skills to do whatever task is needed most at any given time.”

Formulating and enacting innovative programs for the future is nothing new for Anne Broholm. Indeed, she is a member of the NBEDC’s Regeneration Project – a collaborative platform that focuses on research, engagement, and the development of policies that encourage dynamic and sustainable economic growth for a thriving New Bedford.

In addition to protecting their associates’ employment, protecting their health is a top priority, says Broholm. “We have and continue to take all necessary measures to ensure a safe work environment. Our goal has and continues to be to focus on any/all actions we can take to rebuild the company and return to a position of growth. We work every day to identify the takeaways from this challenge that can make AHEAD be even stronger in the future,” she concludes.

Finally, few businesses face the challenges that New Bedford’s many and beloved independent restaurants face.

Jessica Coelho, owner of Tia Maria’s European Cafe in the downtown historic district, recognized this reality early – and faced it head-on by moving decisively. This, too, entailed putting into action some ideas that previously been discussed, but were now imperative to keep the business firing on all burners.

Coelho realized the eatery would have to “drive” take out and, essentially overnight, put in place the infrastructure to make that happen efficiently. “My husband is in the military,” she explains, “so he’s been trained to adapt to change!”

They and her crew quickly created an online ordering platform on ​tiamariaseuropeancafe.com​, and instituted a customer-friendly curbside pick-up service – a challenge for a business in a historic district with no parking lot and limited street frontage.

“I thought about the businesses along Acushnet Avenue,” Jessica says, “And realized they had the same challenge regarding limited parking and curbside to work with.”

Her answer was to designate a dedicated pick-up spot for customers near the restaurant and then promote it vigorously via Tia Maria’s social media. And, it paid off.

“We discovered that curbside take-out was so easy!” she says. “We kind of owned the block!”

Coelho also made sure she was part of the City of New Bedford’s restaurant reopening group launched by the Planning Department, from where she could help formulate outdoor dining policy and eventual indoor reopening plans. It was “very beneficial to be part of the restaurant reopening group,” she says. “It allowed us to open for outdoor dining quickly.”

Tia Maria’s was also part of a program funded by Harvard Pilgrim, coordinated by Coastal Foodshed, which arranged for restaurants to provide meals for seniors.

“That was important to us,” Coehlo says – and not just because it was a financial shot in the arm during the early days of the pandemic. “We didn’t just want to be ‘those people who stayed open during a pandemic.’ We needed a purpose and this gave it to us.” As of mid-July, Tia Maria’s and fellow downtown business Destination Soups have provided over 1,200 meals for seniors through the program.

Like Arthur Glassman and Anne Broholm, Jessica Coehlo says the innovations with which she met the onset of the pandemic will outlive it. Online ordering and curbside pick-up in a historic district, like contact-less vehicle pick-up and cross-training at AHEAD, are ideas that are here to stay.

Though each and other new practices at these businesses were launched to meet a particular moment, they were truly born in a foundation of growth and opportunity that was and is the new bedrock of innovation in this city. While the immediate economic outlook will test the resilience of New Bedford, this culture of regeneration augurs well for the future.

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The New Bedford Economic Development Council is pleased to share the stories of Arthur Glassman, Anne Boholm and Jessica Coelho with you as part of the city’s culture of collaboration. It is what will help see us through the present time and into the future. As always, the NBEDC stands ready to provide any assistance necessary to realize that future, and together we will ride out this storm and maintain the reputation New Bedford has worked so hard to earn over the past decade as a regional economic, creative and social hub for Southeastern Massachusetts.

Bristol Community College offers Free Skills Development Webinars

Contact: Kevin Spirlet
Associate Director of Media Relations
774.357.3361
508.207.8943 (cell)
kevin.spirlet@bristolcc.edu

 

The Coronavirus pandemic has disrupted the lives of so many, both personally and professionally. To assist the region, Bristol Community College’s Business Solutions & Partnerships area is offering free, virtual professional development webinars to develop or strengthen in-demand skills.

 

These innovative webinars provide professional and technical skill development for job seekers, educators, employers and employees looking to increase proficiency in current and forecasted remote work and learning environments. The sessions focus on how to best adapt to the evolving “new norm” of business and education.

 

“Bristol Community College is proud to assist our communities with free professional development webinars during this unprecedented time of change in business and education,” said Jennifer Menard, Interim Vice President, Economic & Business Development, Bristol Community College. “Bristol’s mission is to serve our communities by being able to quickly respond to their needs. This is a great opportunity to aid our regions’ dedicated educators and professionals who are working remotely and in need of virtual in-demand training.”

 

Bristol’s Business Solutions & Partnerships area are offering the free, 60-90-minute live video webinar sessions, accessible from the college’s website listed below. 

 

The webinars will focus on three areas: Virtual Career Exploration and Personal Branding, Upskilling for Distance and Remote Learning for Educators and Professional and Organizational Virtual Training.

 

Career Exploration & Personal Branding includes topics such as developing an effective resume, building a professional LinkedIn presence, the power of personal branding and more.

 

Upskilling for Distance and Remote Learning for Educators includes optimizing student engagement through the Google classroom, time and priority management in the “new norm,” keeping audiences engaged virtually through Zoom, understanding cultural change and the racial divide and more.

 

Professional and Organizational Virtual Training includes development in areas such as improving your productivity with Microsoft Office applications, ways to improve business process improvement virtually, understanding cultural change and the racial divide and more.

 

How to Register: 

 

Participants can register for all or one of the topics in the series.

 

To register or to view a complete listing of the course focuses and topics, please visit:

 

http://bristolcc.coursestorm.com/

 

For more information, please email businesssolutions@bristolcc.edu or call 774.357.2527.

 


 

Business Solutions & Partnerships at Bristol Community College serves the community’s needs for professional development and credentialing leading to opportunities in a wide range of career options and new academic pathways. Business Solutions & Partnerships provides access to affordable, high-quality programs with experienced instructors.

 

These competency-based programs are closely tied to industry needs providing upskilling, credentialing and professional development that is aligned with real jobs and includes new skills and competencies in an ever-changing economy and workplace. Business Solutions & Partnerships also offers high-quality training to the business community to meet regional needs in top industry sectors including healthcare, manufacturing, hospitality, finance, energy and sustainability.

 

For more information about Business Solutions & Partnerships at Bristol Community College, please visitwww.bristolcc.edu/corporateservices.

 


 

About Bristol Community College

 

Bristol Community College (Bristol) has core values rooted in student success and lifelong learning. For more than 50 years, Bristol has served as a leading resource for education and workforce development in the region including locations in Attleboro, Fall River, New Bedford, and Taunton.

 

The college offers a rich variety of degree, certificate, and training programs along with flexible online offerings that lead to an associate degree, a career-ready certificate, or the ability to transfer to baccalaureate colleges throughout the state and country. The Center for Workforce and Community Education provides customized training for businesses and the community. The college also strives to put the needs of learners first with support services and career advancement opportunities that lead to student success by reducing barriers to educational access.

 

Bristol annually serves more than 11,000 credit students and 18,000 students who participate in noncredit activities. The college is one of the largest employers in the region and is dedicated to fostering an inclusive environment with a rich diversity of beliefs, cultures, languages, abilities and lifestyles. Bristol is a public community college accredited by the New England Commission of Higher Education (NECHE). http://www.bristolcc.edu/.

 

Montigny Secures over $114K to Local employer for Training

1420 WBSM New Bedford’s News & Talk Station

A New Bedford-based employer will receive over $114,000 to provide training to over 100 workers and establish new positions by 2021.

Senator Mark Montigny (D-New Bedford) announced Wednesday that Ahead USA, of New Bedford, will receive over $114,000 in workforce training funds from the Executive Office of Labor and Workforce Development.  The grant totaling $114,800 will provide training to approximately 121 workers and help create a number of new positions by 2021.

“These grants provide the funding necessary for invaluable training of our local workforce.  Such investments in our community allow New Bedford companies to flourish and remain competitive in the marketplace while creating new employment opportunities,” said Montigny.

AHEAD is a leading supplier of headwear to the USGA, PGA of America, Ryder Cup, and numerous PGA Tour events in addition to more than 5,000 green grass and resort shops throughout the world.  AHEAD will use the grant to educate and train 112 of its employees.

In 1998 the legislature created the Workforce Training Fund to provide resources to businesses and job creators in Massachusetts to educate and train current and newly hired employees.  The resources provided through the legislature boost economic competitiveness and generate job opportunities for residents.   To date, thousands of workers and hundreds of business in the Commonwealth have benefitted from the Workforce Training Fund.

Original post here:

BCC receives $200K for offshore wind training

Offshore wind training programs just got a boost in the SouthCoast. Vineyard Wind and the Massachusetts Clean Energy Center, on behalf of the Baker-Polito administration, announced six recipients of offshore wind workplace training grants at a news conference on Friday.

Recipients of the over $720,0000 in grants included Bristol Community College, Cape Cod Community College, Massachusetts Maritime Academy, UMass Amherst, Adult Continuing Education- Martha’s Vineyard, and Pile Drivers and Divers Local 56 trade union.

“As we prepare for the construction and installation of offshore wind projects, these grants will help establish a network of critical training programs in the Commonwealth to support local workers as they build this new frontier for American energy,” said Gov. Charlie Baker in a statement.

Speakers at the city’s Marine Commerce Terminal included politicians and representatives from MassCEC and Vineyard Wind, whose speeches all touched on their desire to make Massachusetts the epicenter of the offshore wind industry.

“This is an effort that started a while ago,” said MassCEC CEO Stephen Pike, “and the entire focus of Mass CEC over the last 10 years in terms of offshore wind is to ensure that we make New Bedford, Fall River, Somerset, and the Cape and the islands really the focal point for the industry in the United States.”

Voc-Tech investments pair needs of students, industry

Posted Mar 18, 2019 at 7:57 PM

BOSTON — Lawmakers, a former top Baker administration and city manager, and a one-time lieutenant governor joined advocates Monday to call for an increase in funding for vocational-technical education and passage of a bill to expand access to those programs.

The Alliance for Vocational Technical Education said that 20 percent of Massachusetts high school students are enrolled in a career and technical education (CTE) program, but that 3,200 students across the state are on waiting lists to get into such programs, which focus on career training.

Massachusetts Competitive Partnership CEO Jay Ash said the business leaders he talks to “all have the same thing to say” when he asks them about the future of their business and the state’s economy.

“It’s not about taxes, it’s not about regulations. It’s about workforce,” said Ash, the former state economic development secretary. “We are in a great period of time here in the commonwealth where we have more people working than ever before … and yet employers large and small throughout the commonwealth are saying the same thing: ‘We need more employees, we need more trained employees, we need more of the natural resource that is Massachusetts to fuel our business and support the economy as it continues to expand.’”

The alliance — which is made up of business groups, educational organizations, and civic groups — is pressing for increased Chapter 70 and Chapter 74 local aid for schools with CTE programs, and for the passage of HD 3279, a bill which the alliance said would support the expansion of CTE programs and direct the Department of Elementary and Secondary Education to appoint a deputy commissioner for CTE.

“The goals align,” Ash said. “Businesses, desperate for employees, and students and parents who see vocational education as a way of moving themselves into higher-earning, better quality jobs that are as exciting as any around the commonwealth.”

Tim Murray, the former lieutenant governor and current CEO of the Worcester Regional Chamber of Commerce, said the lobby day is “an opportunity to make the case to key decision makers about the urgent need to eliminate the waiting list across the state of students looking to attend our vocational-technical and agricultural schools.”

Murray also got to be the bearer of good news as he kicked off Monday morning’s advocacy day.

“Word has come from the administration that one of the items that the Alliance for Voc Tech Education has been advocating for, which is $1 million for funding to continue our planning and implementation grants for dual collaborations … that there’s a million dollars in funding planned for that in the upcoming year,” he told the assembled school administrators and advocates.

The $1 million in funding is expected to come via the federal Perkins Career and Technical Education Act of 2006, and DESE said the grants are intended to “support regional and local partnerships to expand existing and/or develop new CTE programs and initiatives that increase student access to CTE opportunities, primarily through more effective use and integration of existing capacity and resources.”

The grant funding will be used, advocates said, to expand partnerships between traditional high schools and vocational schools in an attempt to serve some of the kids currently waiting to get into a CTE program.

Sen. Eric Lesser, the Senate chair of the Economic Development and Emerging Technologies Committee, said vocational education gives students a pathway to middle-class jobs in fields like precision manufacturing and carpentry.

He told the story of his grandfather, a tool and die maker who learned his trade in the U.S. Merchant Marine and was able to raise a family on the wage he earned. Lesser said there are thousands of jobs available right now in the fields of precision and high-tech manufacturing, and said funding vocational education is “one of the most cost-effective ways for us to create jobs right now, locally.”

“In Western Mass. in particular, we have seen an absolute renaissance in advanced manufacturing and precision machining … They’re all fueled by our CTE schools, by our vocational and our technical education,” he said.

Lesser ticked off a half-dozen companies in and around his district that have been making strides in advanced manufacturing — and that will need scores of highly-skilled and trained workers.

“The reason those companies have been based here, the reason why they are growing here is because we have a CTE and (vocational education) system that is the envy of the entire country,” he said. “We also know that when you have a good thing you often need more of it, and there is now a massive waitlist of thousands and thousands of students across Massachusetts … who are desperate to get into these programs.”

BCC, UMD launch program to streamline path to bachelor’s degree

Posted at 12:39 PM

Bristol Community College and the University of Massachusetts Dartmouth have signed a memorandum of understanding to launch the Plus Program: Bristol + UMassD.

The program will provide students with access to associate and bachelor’s degree opportunities, and it will begin enrolling students in September 2019, according to a news release.

“Students in our region deserve to have seamless access to a high-quality and affordable education,” said BCC President Laura L. Douglas in a statement. “The Bristol + UMassD program provides a bridge between institutions that is collaborative and combines the specialized resources of both institutions, creating a rich college experience, while also streamlining the transition to a bachelor’s degree.”

UMD will award merit scholarships of at least $2,500 a year to BCC students who have earned a cumulative GPA of 3.0 or higher and who enroll as full-time, day students. This program is open to BCC students with fewer than 30 credits, as well as students who are participating in the UMD/BCC articulation agreements or the MassTransfer A2B programs.

Students who completed their AS/AA degree from BCC will enter UMD as juniors.

“This innovative collaboration advances our goal to increase educational attainment across the region,” said UMD Chancellor Robert E. Johnson in a statement. “Together, Bristol Community College and UMass Dartmouth are equipping students with the adaptable skillset and agile mindset required to succeed in a rapidly evolving economy.”

In addition to guaranteed admission to UMD and no application costs, BCC students will also benefit from additional offerings including:

    • UMD’s career development staff will offer workshops at BCC so that students can plan their career path.
    • BCC students will receive priority registration in UMD courses for their entering semester.
    • Students will have access to the library, fitness center, bookstore, and dining halls at both campuses.
    • Students will receive BCC and UMD ID cards that provide access to sporting events, musical and theatre productions, speaker programs, and other events at both campuses.

BCC students who sign up for and meet the guidelines of the Commonwealth Commitment program will attend UMD at frozen tuition and fees throughout their remaining two years of study, a 10 percent rebate on tuition and fees per semester, as well as the MassTransfer tuition credit, according to the release. The Massachusetts Department of Higher Education’s Commonwealth Commitment is an agreement between the state’s 15 community colleges and four-year institutions that freezes tuition and fees upon program entry while offering other rebates.

For more information, visit umassd.edu/plus/ or contact the Bristol Community College Office of Transfer Affairs at 774-357-2234 or email transfer@bristolcc.edu.

Original story here.

New state effort will unify workforce development programs

Posted Aug 30, 2018 at 9:43 AM

MassHire, the state’s new branding initiative that will unify the state’s workforce development systems, was rolled out Wednesday by Gov. Charlie Baker and Secretary of Labor and Workforce Development Rosalin Acosta at the now former Fall River Career Center.

With more people looking for workers than people looking for work in Massachusetts, Baker said this branding is a good opportunity for the state.

Baker said the goal “in Fall River and across the Commonwealth (is) to really lift up this notion that … if you’re looking for people, there are people here who are looking for you.”

The state’s new initiative combined with the federal Workforce Opportunity Act passed in 2014 provides more flexibility to structure workforce development efforts, Baker said.

“We have the career centers and the workforce investment boards to serve as what I would describe as the brokers between and among the players,” the governor said.

They are “the folks who are looking for something, the folks looking for workers and the folks looking for the skill sets to change careers,” said Baker before a packed room of local and state workforce development staff, elected officials and some local business leaders.

The new initiative means that the 16 local workforce investment boards across the state will now be known as the MassHire Workforce Boards and the 29 career centers around the state become the MassHire Career Centers. The change in designations includes New Bedford.

In addition, the Massachusetts Workforce Development Board is the MassHire State Workforce Board and the Department of Career Services is the MassHire Department of Career Services.

Acosta, who was appointed by Baker last July, said work on the initiative has already started.

“This is exactly what the career centers are delivering today,” said Acosta. “But without the partnerships with the employers we couldn’t get it done.”

In fiscal 2018, Acosta said the career centers around the state have served 132,000 job seekers with 8,000 disabled and over 6,000 veterans while connecting 4,000 with training opportunities. They have also worked with 20,000 employers.

However a poll of employers showed only 6 percent were aware of the career centers’ services, which needs to change, she said.

Acosta said the unveiling of the initiative “is only step one.”

“We also know we need to modernize, we know we need to bring services to where the people are,” said Acosta.

Greater New Bedford Workforce Investment Board Inc.

Jim Oliveira, Executive Director

1213 Purchase St., 2nd Floor, New Bedford

508-979-1504; www.gnbwib.org/

Bristol Workforce Investment Board

Thomas Perreira, Executive Director

One Government Center, 5th Floor, Fall River

508-675-1165; www.bristolwib.org/

Original story here.

‘Taking it in’: Vineyard Wind wins offshore wind contract with Massachusetts

Vineyard Wind has been selected for Massachusetts’ first offshore wind contract, and Deepwater Wind will receive a contract from Rhode Island based on its Massachusetts bid, state officials announced Wednesday.

Together, their projects total 1,200 megawatts and establish a new industry in the region.

Vineyard Wind was awarded an 800-megawatt wind farm — up to 100 turbines — in federal waters about 14 miles south of Martha’s Vineyard. Deepwater’s project, called Revolution Wind, will be half the size, located south of Little Compton, Rhode Island, and Westport, Massachusetts.

“I’m still at the point of … taking it in,” said Erich Stephens, chief development officer for Vineyard Wind, minutes after the public announcement just after 1:30 p.m. Wednesday.

The two companies were competing with a third bidder, Bay State Wind, in a Massachusetts procurement process, mandated by state law, to provide power to the state’s electric companies. The electric companies selected the winners in concert with the state.

Massachusetts’ choice to award 800 megawatts to a single bidder, rather than split the work into two, came as a surprise to many and somewhat of a disappointment to New Bedford Mayor Jon Mitchell.

“Overall, I’m pleased we’ve arrived at this day,” he said in an interview. He said the day marks an important milestone, but he would have liked to see two projects receive Massachusetts contracts in the first round.

“There would be a greater level of competition for investment commitments in the port,” he said. In addition, having two projects underway at once would be a hedge against one project’s delay holding up in the industry, he said.

Mitchell did not endorse a project. The city will work with any of the developers, he said.

Both of the companies that were not selected in Massachusetts had made specific financial commitments to local colleges, contingent upon winning a contract. Bay State Wind pledged $1 million to Bristol Community College to endow a faculty position in wind energy. Deepwater Wind committed $1 million for a research project called the Blue Economy Initiative at the University of Massachusetts, to be led by the UMass Dartmouth School for Marine Science and Technology, which is in New Bedford.

Each of the three companies presented a package of enticements, some rolled out over time. For example, Bay State Wind offered $17.5 million for energy assistance and weatherization for low-income families.

Vineyard Wind’s enticements totaled $15 million: $10 million for a fund to develop the wind business supply chain in Massachusetts; $3 million to develop technologies to protect marine mammals from the effects of offshore wind construction; and $2 million to recruit, mentor and train in-state workers.

The mayor said the Massachusetts decision shows Gov. Charlie Baker’s administration chose mainly on price. Details of the pricing have not been made public. However, officials in the Baker administration did agree Wednesday that pricing was the most significant element, but not the only one.

Officials from the Executive Office of Energy and Environmental Affairs and the Department of Energy Resources, who asked not to be named because the administration issued its official comments in writing, said a rigorous analysis of the bids gave Vineyard Wind the overall highest score in both qualitative and quantitative benefits — that is, price and other advantages.

Non-price factors included the effect on the economy and environment, the experience of the backers, and the construction schedule, they said. In addition, Vineyard Wind’s early timeline allows it to take advantage of a tax credit that would not be as generous later, they said.

The officials said they plan to work on new initiatives to address the concerns of fishermen, who have said the turbines could negatively affect the natural habitat.

Significant work lies ahead to reconcile differences with the fishing industry, Mayor Mitchell said.

Tony Sapienza, president of the New Bedford Economic Development Council, said he was excited for the winners and “a little bit surprised” that Massachusetts didn’t go with two bidders. But he believes all three companies will be generating electricity in the region before the state finishes procuring the full 1,600 megawatts required by law.

“I think that’s a given,” he said.

All three bidders have room in their federal lease areas for more turbines in the future.

Derek Santos, the council’s executive director, said the city could still stage the installation of both projects from the New Bedford Marine Commerce Terminal. All three companies committed to use the terminal for Massachusetts projects, but no such commitment applies to Rhode Island.

Deepwater Wind CEO Jeffrey Grybowski said “the overwhelming majority” of his project’s work will take place in Rhode Island.

Although New Bedford is not completely out of the picture, “clearly our principal commitment is to Rhode Island,” he said.

Still, Santos considers the award a positive development, and the council will continue to work to maximize the benefits to the port, he said.

Baker said in a news release that the announcement makes the state a hub for an emerging industry and brings it one step closer to “creating a clean, reliable and cost-effective energy future for Massachusetts residents, and significantly reducing greenhouse gas emissions to combat climate change.”

In the Vineyard Wind office on Wednesday, employees fielded phone calls and planned to make a dinner reservation to celebrate, Stephens said.

“New Bedford’s going to be a busy place real soon,” he said.

For him as for others, getting a full 800 megawatts, instead of sharing the award, came as a surprise.

“I was hopeful we might get something,” he said.

Stephens said the company is excited to continue pursuing permits, surveying the ocean floor, and talking to potential suppliers. Construction could begin by the end of 2019.

Vineyard Wind is owned jointly by the Danish investment company Copenhagen Infrastructure Partners and Avangrid Renewables, a division of Connecticut-based energy company Avangrid, which is owned by Iberdrola of Spain.

Bay State Wind, which did not win a contract, issued a statement attributed to two people from its parent companies: Thomas Brostrøm, president of Ørsted North America, and Lee Olivier, an executive vice president at Eversource.

“We’re disappointed by today’s decision by the Massachusetts evaluation team,” they said in the statement. “We made a compelling offer to help the commonwealth meet its ambitious clean energy goals while maintaining strong financial discipline. Further, our proposal to interconnect our project into the former Brayton Point facility in Somerset, Massachusetts, would ensure clean energy delivery into one of the strongest connections on New England’s electrical grid.”

“We remain fully committed to our Bay State Wind partnership, as together we pursue future solicitations in New England and New York,” they said.

The award to Vineyard Wind is conditional upon the successful negotiation of a contract, and the deal must be approved by the Massachusetts Department of Public Utilities. The schedule calls for contracts to be negotiated by July 2 and submitted for approval by July 31.

A 2016 state law requires electric companies doing business in Massachusetts — Eversource, National Grid, and Unitil — to buy 1,600 megawatts of offshore wind power in the next decade, enough to power hundreds of thousands of homes.

Bay State Wind signs agreements to build training center in New Bedford


Bay State Wind has signed agreements to develop a training center for future offshore wind workers in the city, the company announced Monday.

Bay State Wind is a partnership between Ørsted and Eversource for an offshore wind project 25 miles off Massachusetts and 15 miles off the coast of Martha’s Vineyard. Bay State Wind is one of three projects, along with Deepwater Wind and Vineyard Wind, competing in a state-led bidding process in which Massachusetts power companies will buy electricity from offshore wind. A 2016 state law requires power companies to buy long-term contracts for at least 1,600 megawatts of offshore wind power in the next decade.

Bay State Wind has signed agreements with the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers, the Utility Workers Union of America and its Power for America initiative, and the International Association of Bridge, Structural, Ornamental and Reinforcing Iron Workers, along with Bristol Community College and the Massachusetts Maritime Academy, according to a news release.

“We are very happy to be working with Bay State Wind, which is the only offshore wind developer that is committing to become a true Massachusetts company, by training and hiring local union labor,” said Mike Monahan, international vice president, second district, of the IBEW, in a statement.

The company said it expects to hire up to 1,000 workers during the construction phase and create 100 permanent jobs over the 25-year life of the turbines, with an operations and maintenance facility that also will be located in New Bedford.

If chosen by the state for the contract, Bay State Wind also has pledged $1 million to BCC, which will “endow a faculty position to help BCC, which would offer the only degree completion program in offshore wind … Bay State Wind will collaborate with BCC faculty and staff to train other teachers, to create an ambitious internship program and to build a new, national model for preparing the workforce for this growing industry and its supply chain,” BCC President Laura Douglas said in March.

“New Bedford has sent its people to sea for nearly 300 years, and in the process, became a global leader, first in whaling and then in commercial fishing,” said Mayor Jon Mitchell in a statement. “We see the establishment of an offshore wind training center here as an important step in staking our claim in the emerging offshore wind industry. We appreciate Bay State Wind’s commitment to preparing the industry’s workforce, and we look forward to working with our partners in higher education and organized labor to make the proposed center a reality.”

Bay State Wind already has signed an agreement with NEC Energy Solutions, headquartered in Westboro, to build a factory to manufacture storage batteries, according to the release. Last month, Bay State Wind reached an agreement with EEW, the international market leader in steel pipe manufacturing, to open and staff a plant to manufacture offshore wind components, in collaboration with Gulf Island Fabrication. EEW is considering a variety of sites, including locations on SouthCoast.

Original story here.