Budget may boost jobs program for exiting Marines

      By SEANNA ADCOXAssociated Press

      COLUMBIA, S.C. (AP) - The state budget could provide $200,000 to a program that aims to boost the Lowcountry's economy by helping exiting Marines find jobs locally.

      The Senate's spending proposal for 2014-15 designates the money to the Transitional Workforce Education Assistance Collaborative, a program launched in 2012 to assist those leaving the military from one of Beaufort County's three bases.

      Lowcountry Economic Alliance director Kim Statler says the goal is to keep their expertise in South Carolina.

      The program complements Operation Palmetto Employment, a statewide effort launched in February to find jobs for transitioning military service members of every branch, as well as veterans and spouses.

      A committee of House and Senate members will likely begin meeting this week to reach a compromise on a budget for the fiscal year starting July 1.

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