Jobs, Jobs, Jobs
Jobs will not solve every problem, but jobs will help solve every problem. Therefore, I have been working in an effort to bring several manufacturers to the Dome District. The City has been assembling land for more than a decade without bringing the jobs. Fortunately, I have been able to work with staff and a number of local businesspeople with connections around the world which has resulted in very serious disucssions about building additional plants in the district.
I believe we have an excellent chance of breaking ground on the first of the manufacturing sites before the year is out. Others will locate in temporary sites while they work out the details of building a facility. The jobs will have the full range from blue collar construction work to high technology research and development needs.
We need to look at everything we do to try to find ways to generate jobs from this. The city tears down about 50 houses per year. I am trying to convince my fellow councilmembers and staff that we should allow people to pull the valuable items (doors, cabinets, stairs, baseboards, hardwood floors, windows, sinks, air conditioners, metal, etc) out of the houses before we tear them down. The city would collect a modest fee, a number of jobs would be created and useful items would not go to the dump.
Another area that I am working on is called priority hiring. The city contracts at least a hundred million dollars per year of construction projects. While giving local companies a price advantage has the negative impact of raising our (taxpayers) cost, there is another way to insure that many of the jobs from significant projects go to local people. We can mandate that on projects that are big enough that many people will be hired, like the new Pier or new Police Station,that most of the newly hired employees be hired locally. This item will come before the City Council Budget committe by the end of the month.