Letter: Thank you Rep. Hagedorn for addressing growing shortage of skilled trade workers

Published 7:51 am Saturday, October 12, 2019

I am writing to commend and thank Rep. Hagedorn for introducing legislation expanding eligibility for 529 educational savings plans to help address the growing shortage of skilled trade workers.

Talk to any manufacturer or owner of a construction company and they will quickly tell you that one of their greatest challenges is the lack of trained “blue collar” workers. The booming economy has made this shortage even more severe.

Rep. Hagedorn’s bipartisan bill (co-introduced with Rep. Van Drew, D-NJ) would make significantly more vocational training programs eligible for individuals with tax-free 529 plans. Allowing people to spend more of their own pre-tax money on vocational training by putting them on the same level as 2 and 4 year college degrees is a very important first step toward lessening the current shortage of skilled laborers. Thank you, Rep. Hagedorn, for being willing to ignore all the partisan bickering in DC and reach across the aisle to address a very real problem in our district and across the country.

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Aaron Ferris

Albert Lea, MN