Build California, Hire California, Buy America
SCR 49 (DeSaulnier), SB 967 (Correa/DeSaulnier)
and AB 1830 (Jones)
Working people in California face the bleakest economy since the Great Depression. Since the year 2000, we have lost 25 percent of all manufacturing jobs, once the backbone of California’s middle class. The unemployment rate is at a 30-year high, with six job seekers for every one job available. Mounting job losses come on the heels of the mortgage meltdown, making it even harder for families to hold onto their homes. Public services have been slashed, while public employees have seen widespread layoffs, furloughs, and pay cuts.
In these harsh budget times, there is little the state can do directly to create jobs. One important tool we have is the use of public dollars. Taxpayer funds can either go to corporations that pay substandard wages in other states or countries, or they can go to create good jobs here in California.
The state spends $35 billion on state contracts and consultants every year. That money must be spent responsibly on companies that will create jobs in California. Fourteen other states have some form of bid preferences in state contracts for resident companies, companies that use local goods, or companies that hire local workers.
California is entitled to over $85 billion in federal stimulus funds and this money should be spent to buy American goods and rejuvenate our national economy. We were just awarded another $2.25 billion to build the high-speed rail system. Rather than import rail cars from overseas, we should build them here in California. This will revitalize our manufacturing base and put people back to work.
Investing in jobs here does more than just reduce unemployment. For every good job created, there is a multiplier effect, as another family is able to put money back into the economy again. In addition, there is a general fund savings as fewer working families are forced to rely on the safety net.
What These Bills Will Do
- SCR 49 (DeSaulnier) Buy America: This resolution says that federal stimulus funds should be used to create jobs for American workers. This includes buying goods and services that are made in America.
- SB 967 (Correa & DeSaulnier) Hire California: This bill provides a 5% bid preference in state contracts for goods and services to companies that will hire California workers.
- AB 1830 (Jones) Build High-Speed Rail in California: This bill promotes the purchase of high-speed rail cars that are built in California.
- California Labor Federation, AFL-CIO (Sponsor)
- Communications Workers of America (CWA)
- California Teamsters
- United Steelworkers of America (USWA)
California Labor Federation
(916) 444-3676, ext. 17