Miners are in such need that mining companies are running ads and conducting job fairs.
The idea of a worker shortage doesn't mean finding a job in Eastern Kentucky is an easy task.
The state has issued more than 7,000 temporary licenses to work in the underground mines in the last three years.
Of those licensed, 1,964 have found work.
The U.S. Labor Department says 3,500 additional underground miners are needed in Eastern Kentucky.
The temporary license issued by the state means the miners must work for 45 days wearing a trainee's hardhat and can't operate equipment or work without supervision until the trainee status is over.