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Planning is underway for FARM II

Rendering of proposed Blue Mountain Regional Workforce Training Center (FARM II) via BMCC

PENDLETON, Oregon – If Gov. Kate Brown’s budget passes with the funding for Blue Mountain Community College’s FARM II project intact, ground will be broken much sooner than originally anticipated. The facility, referred to at the state level as the Blue Mountain Regional Workforce Training Center, is earmarked to receive $8 million in the governor’s proposed budget.

BMCC Interim President Connie Green says before the budget was announced, the college was looking at having to spend a few years fundraising to complete the facility that will include an indoor rodeo arena. Now, stakeholders are busy preparing for the possibility that it will be coming sooner.

Green said several work groups have been formed to get ready for the project. One group is planning the programs that will be offered, another is preparing for a workforce to be hired, and another is looking at the buildings themselves.

“Then, the real issue is, how do you operate it and create a business plan around all of those,” Green said.

Green said the work groups are made up of people willing to work hard to make the plans progress smoothly.

“They’re not ‘forever’ groups,” she said. “I don’t like ‘forever’ groups. They’re sharp and targeted, so when we come and bring it out of the ground, we can run it. We’ll break even with it or make money for our community.”

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