HARTFORD, Conn. (AP) _ Connecticut Gov. Dannel Malloy is touting the success of a state program that promotes job creation by providing wage subsidies and training grants to small businesses.

The initiative, known as the Subsidized Training and Employment Program or Step Up, help cover the costs of training new hires during the first six months of employment.

Malloy announced Friday that the initiative has led to the hiring of 2,200 new workers.

The governor says the program has helped more than 700 employers fill well-paying jobs and expand their workforce.

The program was included in a bipartisan job creation bill passed by the General Assembly during the October 2011 special session. The initiative has provided $16.5 million in wage and training subsidizes.

The program was later expanded to include a subsidy to companies of any size that hire veterans.