Methanol plant coming to Port of Kalama launches job training program

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LONGVIEW, Wash.  — A company that wants to put a $1 billion methanol plant at the Port of Kalama is planning a hiring program for Cowlitz County residents.

The Daily News reports Lower Columbia College, Workforce Southwest Washington, and Northwest Innovations Works are collaborating on the program for 40 out of about 200 future employees.

Local high school graduates would fill 20 jobs.

The rest would be taken up by veterans, people with disabilities, and others facing barriers to employment based on federal guidelines.

Some will be eligible to take free Lower Columbia College courses.

A timeline for rolling out the hiring program depends on permitting for the proposed plant.

The Southwest Clean Air Agency recently issued a preliminary air quality permit for the project.