America Works

With all the recent political posturing on how best to get people employed and the economy moving, I was struck with a thought. Just as it takes a village to raise a child, perhaps it takes a city or county to employ a person. Why are we waiting for the federal government to help us when they have problems handling anything efficiently due to the size of the beast?

Let’s step back and think about this. With employment offices being local, perhaps they need to work with the local city and county offices to set up a local training program, that allows the unemployed to get valuable training, the city/county office to receive valuable help and partial compensation from the federal government, and even with the federal government paying partial compensation, the savings would still be just under 185 billion based on the figures I’ve found. Plus these employed people would now be paying taxes and have pride and hope restored in the system. I find it objectionable that everyone doesn’t pay something for the services they receive from government. Even if it is a minimal 1%-3% of their gross, at least they have pride and ownership in their own government. If you pay them a reasonable starting salary depending on the job (perhaps minimum of $30,000 with the government paying half of that leaving the local city/county agency to be paying basically minimum wage, it’s a win-win solution for all.

Also, once they’ve completed their training with whatever agency they were placed with for a year, they are then placed into a further training program with local business sponsors for another year with the same conditions. If the corporate sponsor then hires them, they agree to increase their salary to the industry average.

All this is coordinated with a local employment division with each level of completion noted for the agencies that are utilizing the program. It would take investment in time and effort for everyone involved, but we need to invest in our own people. Also, in the preliminary placement, it might be discovered that the educational system might have failed various people. I think that the local education system can be brought into the mix and these disadvantaged people, can be tutored and their level of competency be raised so that they have the skills that reflect in their increased earnings. I would think that this would happen during the city/county tenure. Perhaps they would work for a full paycheck but only actually work for 30 hours with the other 10 hours being spent with their assigned educational mentor.

Now for the financial figures:

15,000,000 unemployed x 407/week unemployment compensation = 6,105,000,000 per week being paid out. If you take that times two years (the one year that the individual would be employed by the city/county and then the other year that they would be employed by the corporate sponsor), this is a grand total of 634,920,000,000 being paid out in compensation

Initial administrative costs: The local employment office personnel are already budgeted. The city/county would have to designate a person for this as well as the local educational system. A city/county job trainee could be hired to be trained as the program coordinator’s replacement. There would probably be additional costs associated with providing tutoring for those who need additional education at 3100 counties * 50,000 per educator = 155,000,000.

Costs of program: 15,000,000 x $30,000 (2 years at 15,000 partial compensation) = 450,000,000,000 + educator costs 155,000,000 = 450,155,000,000 over two years

Costs of two years of unemployment payments = 634,920,000,000

Savings of program over unemployment compensation = 184,765,000,000

Plus, these people would be paying taxes and be increasingly hireable for future jobs. Local cities/counties would get valuable help that they don’t have currently due to their reduced budgets. All government levels would see increased tax revenues due to these new taxes being brought in.

Of course there would be problems. The number one problem I can see is how many new jobs can you come up with for 15,000,000 people over 3100 counties which would be 4800 people per county being trained. Creative brainstorming would be needed to utilize everyone in the best way.

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