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TRAINing program
(Colorado Only)

The outside line construction trade has an ongoing requirement for heavy equipment operators.  The Operator Training Program is designed to instruct and train individuals on how to become a competent heavy equipment operator for the line trade.  The training program is designed to be two years which involves on the job training, attending scheduled training classes one weekend a month, and acquiring and staying current on all required certifications.  All aspects of the program will be monitored by Mountain States.  Trainees will be expected to be employable during the period while a trainee.  

The Operator Training Program is a certification program designed to develop Journeyman Equipment Operators over an approximate two-year period through both on-the-job (OJT) and classroom training.

Trainees can enter the program without a CDL, but will be required to have a CDL Permit by the time they advance to a 2nd Step (6 months from start date) and obtain a CDL with no restrictions by 3rd Step (1 year from start date).

Some of the equipment the Trainee will be trained on will be: trenchers, backhoes, excavators, dozers, boom trucks, digger derricks, and cranes.  Trainees will also be instructed on how to install underground utilities and work with crews that build and maintain overhead power lines.  

Trainees will enter the program as a Trainee Step 1. Trainees may advance every six months if all requirements have been met. Trainee pay is determined by step and calculated by a percentage of the Journeyman Equipment Operator Underground rate as outlined in the Colorado Statewide Collective Bargaining Agreement.  Trainees entering the program with a current CDL will start at Step 2 wages.

Current Journeyman Wage: $36.41 (as of 9-1-22)

Trainee Step 1 = 60%

Trainee Step 2 = 70%

Trainee Step 3 = 80%

Trainee Step 4 = 90%


Open enrollment months will be announced by the Training Program to the Local Unions and Signatory Contractors. 

Employment by and referral from one of our signatory contractors will place an individual in the Training Program.

Training will start in July.

Space is limited for the Operator Training Program.


  • Must be at least 18 years of age

  • Employment with a signatory contractor

Image by Ade Adebowale
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