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San Francisco Supervisor Proposes Mandating 50% Local Hires

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SAN FRANCISCO (KCBS/AP) – A San Francisco supervisor wants a 50 percent local hiring mandate to put the unemployed to work on city-funded projects.

San Francisco has a 9 percent jobless rate, with up to 15 percent out of work in poor neighborhoods, and Supervisor John Avalos says putting some of them to work should be a priority.

Avalos introduced the legislation on Tuesday.

KCBS’ Barbara Taylor Reports:

The San Francisco Chronicle says current city law only requires contractors to show they’ve made a good-faith effort to meet the city’s nonbinding goal that 50 percent of the workers live in San Francisco.

But a study commissioned by the Mayor’s Office of Economic and Workforce Development found that just 20 percent of the city-funded jobs were filled by local residents.

Avalos claimed the local hiring goals simply have not produced the desired results, and it’s time for those goals to become mandates.

”When it comes to making local investments with our tax dollars for building our public infrastructure, it makes sense that we have as much benefit as we can at the local level,” said Avalos.

His legislation would require companies with city contracts to hire 30 percent local in the first year of the law, and increase it to 50 percent by the third year. There would also be local hiring mandates for apprentice work and for subcontractors.

”We can do better by having mandated levels for local hiring,” said Avalos. “We can assure we’re reaching a much higher goal.”

The legislation would also establish incentives for contractors who exceed the city’s local hiring mandates. There would also be penalties for contractors who fall short of the mark.

(© 2010 CBS Broadcasting Inc. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. The Associated Press contributed to this report.)

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