KC-Area Manufacturers See Skilled Worker Shortage

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KANSAS CITY, Mo. (AP) — Manufacturing companies in Kansas and Missouri say there are plenty of high-paying jobs available for people qualified to run sophisticated factory equipment, but there doesn't seem to be enough local talent to fill them.

Industry leaders in both states say many job applicants lack even basic reading, writing and math skills necessary to perform required tasks.

The Kansas City Star reports larger manufacturers are able to afford up to $10,000 per worker for training, but that's more of a challenge for smaller companies.

The Federal Reserve Bank of Kansas City said in its August manufacturing survey that regional manufacturing companies have been expanding production for eight straight months.

Several manufacturers with openings in the Kansas City area say their vacant positions would pay between $14 and $25 an hour.