(Update, June 7) – Syracuse’s Common Council has passed the Resident Employment Ordinance, requiring contractors who receive at least $100,000 worth of work from the city to employ at least 20 percent of their workers from within the city of Syracuse.
Companies that receive the contracts will be required to submit both residency and payroll records for their employees, and will face penalties if they fail to meet the requirements.
The Common Council said it plans to review the results of the ordinance in one year’s time.
(From May 20) – The City of Syracuse is working to pass a new law that will help protect the livelihood of local construction workers.
The Resident Employment Ordinance introduced by the Common Council mandates that a portion of new hires under city contracts be local city residents.
The ordinance would require 20 percent of all new contracted city hires to be city residents. This applies to construction, public works, and service contracts accounting for at least $100,000.
Councilor Khalid Bey, who proposed the law earlier this week, believes this action will lead to jobs that will support families while generating income for the government.
The Department of Neighborhood and Business Development will enforce this new rule. If they are found to be in violation of the ordinance, contractors can potentially have their contracts revoked.
Aggie Lane, president of the Urban Jobs Task Force (UJTF) is happy this law was enacted after five years of deliberations.
She tells Syracuse.com, “The fact that this came out of corporation counsel shows that the administration is ready to go forward.”
Barry Lentz, chair of UJTF, agrees. He believes this ordinance will decrease unemployment in Syracuse, a city that has the highest rate of poverty concentrated between the African American and Hispanic demographic.
Syracuse is not the only city to have this idea. Nationwide, major cities like San Francisco, Los Angeles, Pittsburgh, and Cleveland have ratified similar laws. In fact, Syracuse ordinance is based on Cleveland’s law enacted in 2004.
This ordinance follows in the footsteps of other companies around the nation. America’s staffing companies hire more than 14 million temporary and contracted employees annually.
The Common Council will meet within the next few weeks to further discuss the ordinance in a public forum before the bill is signed into law.