By MARINA STARLEAF RIKER
HONOLULU (AP) - Maui workers left without a job when the state's last sugar plantation closes this year will be able to get financial help.
U.S. Sen. Brian Schatz, D-Hawaii, announced Monday that Hawaiian Commercial and Sugar Co. employees who lose their jobs will be able to get money through a federal program to help replace lost wages. Workers could receive up to $2,000 a month for a year while they're retrained for a new job. That's in addition to state benefits and job training.
Approximately 675 Maui residents work for Hawaii's last sugar plantation, which plans to end sugar operations by the end of 2016. The company has been growing sugar for over 140 years, but plans to switch gears and pursue diversified agriculture for its 36,000 acres currently in use.