LOS ANGELES – The Los Angeles City Council passed the Local Preference Ordinance 12-0. The measure, which was spearheaded by Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa, is intended to create local jobs by helping local businesses compete for City government contracts. The ordinance, when it is signed on Wednesday, will give businesses in Los Angeles County an 8 percent competitive advantage in bids and proposals for City government contracts.
In response to the passage of the Local Preference Ordinance, Mayor Villaraigosa issued the following statement:
“We are not waiting for Washington to create jobs. The Local Preference Ordinance helps level the playing field, making it possible for local businesses to compete more effectively for City government contracts. This will help us create more jobs in Los Angeles and a stronger local economy.”
“I would like to thank Councilmembers Krekorian and Parks for their leadership in partnering with the Mayor’s office on this ordinance and Council President Garcetti for his work in speeding its approval.
“I would also like to recognize Councilmember Alarcon for introducing a motion which moves us closer to a change in the City Charter which will allow the local preference to be targeted directly to businesses in the City of Los Angeles rather than in the County of Los Angeles as currently required by the Charter. I fully support this common-sense change to our City Charter.”
The Local Preference Ordinance was developed last year by the Mayor’s Office of Economic and Business Policy as a way to create jobs in Los Angeles.
In 2010-2011, LA City government contracted for goods and services (including construction) in excess of $2.4 billion. A review of spending by eight major LA City Departments in 2008-09 showed that only 15 percent of City contracts were going to businesses located in the City of Los Angeles.
The Local Preference Ordinance applies to all of LA City’s General Fund departments.
Mayor Villaraigosa announced on Friday that he is writing to the heads of six departments beyond the reach of the ordinance — the Department of Water and Power, the Port of Los Angeles, Los Angeles World Airports, Recreation and Parks, the Community Redevelopment Agency, and the Los Angeles Public Library — urging them to adopt an 8 percent competitive advantage for local businesses.
The Local Preference Ordinance is part of an overarching mayoral strategy to get contracts and jobs to local companies and local residents. Local hire agreements that require at least 30 percent of the workers to come from the City of Los Angeles have been adopted at the Department of Public Works, the Community Redevelopment Agency, the Port of Los Angeles, and Los Angeles World Airports. Under the mayor’s leadership, a “Targeted Hire Strategy” is being negotiated at the Metropolitan Transportation Authority. This strategy would direct jobs to those areas with extremely high unemployment.