Alameda Corridor Joins With Conservation Corps to Provide Jobs, Training


APRIL 20, 2000

  LOS ANGELES COUNTYAiming to bolster job training while beautifying surrounding communities, the public agency building a $2.4 billion rail cargo expressway has launched the Alameda Corridor Transportation Authority Conservation Corps.

The program will recruit, train and employ 200 young adults (ages 18-23) over the course of one year. Participants will provide valuable services along the Corridor route, such as removing debris, eradicating graffiti and planting trees.

The program, approved Thursday by the ACTA Governing Board, is a joint effort involving ACTA, the Conservation Corps of Long Beach and the Los Angeles Conservation Corps. ACTA will provide $1.2 million in funding while the two local Corps will administer the program.

"The Conservation Corps has an exceptional track record of providing training and employment opportunities for young adults," said ACTA Governing Board Chairman Jeffrey A. Kellogg, a Long Beach City Councilman. "This program provides an excellent opportunity to augment our Mid-Corridor contractor’s job training program while providing clear benefits to Corridor communities."

Said ACTA Chief Executive Officer James C. Hankla: "This cooperative program is clearly a sound concept where everybody wins. We are confident that it will enhance employment opportunities for young adults while directly benefiting the communities along the route of the Alameda Corridor. With this program, we particularly want to target at-risk 18-23 year-olds who often face difficult challenges entering the job market or continuing their education."

The Conservation Corps is a private non-profit company that provides youth with training, education and work experience in a variety of areas, including recycling, landscaping, sidewalk replacement and conservation programs.

The Alameda Corridor Conservation Corps will recruit from Corridor communities. Recruits will be paid minimum wage for 32-36 hours per week while receiving training and education – for example, credits toward a high school diploma – for 6-10 hours per week.

The program will be divided into four three-month segments with 50 participants in each, for a total of 200 participants over the course of one year.

After three months, participants have the option to join the Conservation Corps full-time, phase into a Long Beach or Los Angeles city college program, or enroll in a business, vocational, trade school or apprenticeship program. Assistance is provided in tracking jobs and applying for grants and loans.

"This Alameda Corridor Conservation Corps will draw on the strengths of successful private, non-profit organizations and one of the biggest public works projects in the nation to help our communities to prosper and our younger residents to gain important job experience," said Los Angeles City Councilman Rudy Svorinich Jr., vice chairman of the ACTA Governing Board.

ACTA, a partnership between the cities and ports of Long Beach and Los Angeles, is building a 20-mile-long railroad cargo expressway from the ports to the transcontinental rail yards near downtown Los Angeles. The project, scheduled for completion in 2002, will speed the flow of cargo and reduce traffic congestion by eliminating conflicts at more than 200 street-level railroad crossings.

For additional information:

  • Conservation Corps of Long Beach, Executive Director Mike Bassett, (562) 986-1249.
  • Los Angeles Conservation Corps, Executive Director Bruce Saito, (213) 362-9000, ext. 203.

 

CONTACTS:
PHIL HAMPTON (562) 435-5551

MARIA MORENO (310) 233-7480

 

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