Good-faith mistake, or something else?

Wednesday, December 19, 2012
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It's OK for Schenectady residents to be a little confused when it comes to the word Carver . The community center of that name for many years has been working with black kids, while the construction company of the same name has been avoiding working with black subcontractors -- even when their contracts with the city called for it.

Not long ago, Carver Construction was resisting the idea of working with minority subcontractors altogether. Why should we, its president asked, when we have the ability to do all the work ourselves? The company blatantly skirted the minority requirement by writing the ads to require the most advanced skills, then saying it couldn't find qualified minorities.

This lack of cooperation led to Carver being shut out of city contracts for two years under an aggressive new affirmative action director, Miriam Cajuste. And, lo and behold, Carver agreed to start complying, and won some city contracts again this year.

On the first, a culvert project, it came very close to meeting the city's goal of having minority contractors do 12 percent of the work (as did other contractors for five other projects). But on the second, a paving project, Carver failed miserably, with just 1 percent of the work going to minority contractors.

The explanation Carver officials gave to Mayor Gary McCarthy was that they hired someone [a trucker to haul away debris] who said he was on the state's list of certified minority subcontractors, but turned out not to be. It would have been easy to verify the subcontractor's status by simply checking the state's Website, but Carver apparently did not. Nor did it contact Cajuste. That raises questions about the company's good faith.

If city officials want to keep giving jobs to Carver , as they seem to, and also keep minority participation goals for city-financed projects, as they should, better communication and monitoring will be needed.

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December 20, 2012
7:38 a.m.
wmarincic says...

I see you keep bashing Carver Construction that has come to the aid of Schenectady many times. Let me ask the Gazette this but I doubt that I will get an answer. How many minorities are upper or mid level managers at the Gazette? What percent of minorities are employed by the Gazette and I dont mean paper carriers. Hmmmm.

December 20, 2012
10:53 p.m.
wmarincic says...

I didn't think that the Gazette would respond.... What a surprise. Let me say, according to the Gazettes own staff page, there are 104 people with a title working at the Gazette..... Out of those 104 people, every single one that had a photo was white, every single one...So please tell me about Carver Construction again....

December 21, 2012
10:03 a.m.
wmarincic says...
(This comment was removed by the site staff.)
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