Price of Cleaning Chicago City Buildings Goes Up
City Council officials in Chicago pushed for an ordinance that would boost the hourly wage paid to hundreds of private janitors from roughly $9 and no benefits to the $16 an hour plus benefits paid by the city, according to Chicago Sun-Times reports. Contractors would be required annually to match the wage and benefits set for city janitors by the Illinois Department of Labor.
This proposal comes on the heals of a battle with Mayor Daley that resulted in a veto of an ordinance that would have required retailers to pay employees at least $13 an hour, with benefits, by 2010.
Over the years, Daley has pushed towards privatization, which has reduced the city's work force of in-house janitors from an estimated 2,000 full-time employees 12 years ago to roughly 200 today. According to the article, city employees once cleaned every government building, police and fire station. Now they are limited to neighborhood libraries and just one terminal at O'Hare Airport.
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