Over 400 Hartford Teens Left Jobless This Summer
More than 400 young people in the city of Hartford, Connecticut will be left jobless this summer because lawmakers in the city have failed to approve a budget for the fiscal year 2018.
The city’s summer employment program for teens and young graduates is supposed to commence in the first and second weeks of July. The program receives appropriations from the city, which, in the absence of a budget, will not be made.
The June 30 deadline to approve the budget has passed, and city politicians have failed to present an agreed-upon budget for the next fiscal year. Connecticut Governor Dannel P. Malloy had proposed a short-term compromise on the budget in order to keep the state machinery running, but the State Legislature rejected that proposal, which included $3.5 million in funding for the summer employment program.
Hartford’s summer jobs program is conducted by Capital Workforce Partners, which coordinates the program for the youth in Connecticut’s north-central region.
The program offers summer employment opportunities to young students between the ages of 14 and 21. The candidates are placed in both private- and public-sector jobs. Opportunities include placements at municipal offices, libraries, and technology companies.
In addition to providing a first-time experience of a real job, summer jobs also allow young students to save up for college. Earnings from summer jobs help students, particularly from low-income families, to buy books and clothes before they begin their new term in fall.
The CEO and President of Capital Workforce Partners, Alex Johnson, says that employment opportunities for the youth will have to be slashed due to the shortage of funds. “We’re all probably disappointed in the lack of action on the budget,” said Johnson. “It wasn’t necessarily expected. I thought they would be able to work something out at the 11th hour, and they were not able to do it,” said the CEO.
The City of Hartford is now facing a severe cash crunch. Amid the budget impasse, cash flows from the state are restricted while bills are piling up. The budget crisis has forced city officials to consider filing for bankruptcy. Hartford is reported to have already hired a bankruptcy lawyer.
“400 Young People in Hartford Area Won’t Get Summer Jobs Because of State Budget Impasse,” Hartford Courant, July 9, 2017.