RSCCD trustee and Democratic candidate for SD-34 Jose Solorio today announced that he drove an effort approved Monday by the Rancho Santiago Community College District (RSCCD) Board of Trustees that will create thousands of local jobs while improving education facilities at Santa Ana College.
From the press release: “The agreement requires 66 percent of all those hired to work on upcoming construction projects at Santa Ana College to live in Orange County and 50 percent to live within the college district’s jurisdiction cities, including Garden Grove, Santa Ana, Anaheim, Orange, Tustin, Irvine and Villa Park. The measure will also help veterans to enter and succeed in construction through a “helmets to hardhats” program that has been implemented successfully in other communities. Present and past RSCCD students in local construction apprenticeship programs will also benefit under the agreement’s local hire program.
“I’m proud we are building new classrooms and facilities at Santa Ana College, but I’m just as proud that the majority of the construction work will be performed by our local residents,” said Jose Solorio, President of the Board of Trustees. “A project of this magnitude has a multiplier effect that positively impacts not just these workers, but our entire local economy.” Using data from other construction projects, Community College Trustee Solorio estimated the agreement will create or save 2,880 jobs. Matching local and state dollars could mean the impact is even greater, he said. While the economy has rebounded somewhat, its downward spiral in the past years has been hard-felt in Orange County’s construction industry. The Community and Student Workforce Project Agreement will undoubtedly help get local residents back to work.
The college construction project is the result of Measure Q, a $198 million bond measure approved by Santa Ana voters in 2012. The measure will fund the upgrading of career training facilities for science, nursing, technology and other trade programs. In addition, it will help repair, construct and acquire classrooms, facilities, technology, equipment and security systems for students at Santa Ana College.”
Now despite what our friends at OC Political have to say about this, Solorio didn’t give away anything, but Dave Everett, who is the Government Affairs Director for the Associated Builders and Contractors in Southern California, wrote: “This money should go to new buildings and improving conditions for our students, not to pay off Jose Solorio’s political donors.
Worse yet, this special interest deal discriminates against over 80% of local construction workers in favor of Big Labor bosses and union companies from Los Angeles.
Unfortunately, we see this all too often when a politician wants to run for higher political office. The unspoken agreement is that Jose Solorio will vote to limit construction on the $198 million dollar Measure Q Bond passed in 2012 and in return Big Labor unions will shower his campaign for the 34th Senate District with political donations.”
But the money is going to new buildings and improving conditions for students. And the workers will be local, not from Los Angeles.