John McCarron is a part-time columnist for the Chicago Tribune.
Nice enough fellow, but, based on his columns, I doubt he would object to my labeling him as a “liberal.”
McCarron has come up with a suggestion that will make union Democrats blanch.
He suggests that legislative Democrats remove the requirement that contractors pay prevailing wage ($43.35 per hour for carpenters, for example) on projects using Federal money.
He specifically points to such subsidies under the Neighborhood Stablilization Program.
That’s been around since 2009, but the money isn’t being used to reclaim foreclosed properties.
“At these rates, it’s difficult, if not impossible to buy and rehab a bungalow or two-flat in a distressed neighborhood like Chicago Lawn,” he writes on July 27th.
McCarron suggests that this idea be one of the concessions that legislative Democrats should be willing to make.
“Think of all the Jose-size contractors who’d be hiring workers, buying drywall, renting to working families and generally chipping away at the blight that brings down neighborhoods.